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AGA unhappy with revised interpretation of Federal Wire Act

American Gaming Association

The American Gaming Association (AGA) has voiced disapproval of new law interpretations that threaten to choke the nation’s booming gambling industries.

Last week, the US Department of Justice revised its 2011 reading of the Interstate Wire Act and declared all forms of remote gaming and wagering illegal under federal law.

The legislation had previously only applied to sports betting, but now it also encompasses online casinos, poker rooms and lotteries.

Although less than pleased with the DOJ’s decision, Sara Slane is adamant that it will not affect emerging wagering industries in states such as Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

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“It is unfortunate the Department of Justice departed from well-established practice in reversing its previous opinion without a compelling reason to do so,” said the AGA’s Senior Vice President of Public Affairs.

“However, the 2018 OLC opinion does not impact the ability for states and tribes to legalise and regulate gaming on a state-by-state and tribal basis, or for companies to provide the exciting products and entertainment experiences our customers want.

“With over 4,000 regulators and billions of dollars allocated to compliance, casino gaming is one of the most highly regulated industries in the country and for decades has provided its customers with cutting-edge products in a safe, regulated environment pursuant to state, tribal and federal law.”

US gambling operators have three months to get their affairs in order before the DOJ begins enforcing the new reading of the Wire Act.