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US Justice Department puts a scare through online gambling industry

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Online gambling in the USA has hit a significant hurdle, following the US Justice Department’s new ‘legal opinion’ on the prohibition of interstate wagering.

The viability of all US online gambling, including sport, has come under question after the summary from the Department of Justice leaked this week, signalling that the prohibition on wagering that crosses state lines should apply to all forms of gambling.

The US gambling industry had received an incredible boost in 2018 after its supreme court ruled that The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 was invalid, opening the door for individual states to legalise and regulate sports betting.

While this new Justice Department ‘opinion’, which is widely expected to be challenged in courts for years to come, does not overturn the 2018 SCOTUS ruling, it does put a momentary pause on the stark growth of the online gambling industry and returns some strength to land-based casinos, like those in Las Vegas, which punters may still now have to visit to legally place bets, in-person or online.

This Justice Department opinion is a reversal from a decision made under the Barack Obama administration in 2011 which created an opportunity for state lotteries to launch online, raising millions for Government coffers.

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