U.S. Fed, Treasury set anti-online gambling rule
NEW YORK |
NEW YORK Nov 12 (Reuters) - The U.S. Federal Reserve and Treasury Department on Wednesday gave banks and other payment services companies one year to clamp down on the illegal transfer of funds to internet gambling sites.
The move is the result of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006, which cleared away any doubt that online gambling is illegal in the United States by making payments to gambling sites illegal.
The law prohibits payments made through credit cards, electronic funds transfers and checks related to online wagers. The joint Fed-Treasury rule requires U.S. financial firms participating in payment systems to implement procedures that prevent such payments by Dec. 1, 2009.
In the United States, live gaming and casinos are only allowed in certain states under strict rules. States with economies buoyed by gambling such as Louisiana and Nevada, along with some religious groups, campaigned hard against internet gambling.
Overseas companies tried to exploit the potentially huge market for U.S. online gambling, but met with legal resistance. Executives of European firms Sportingbet SBT.L and BETonSPORTS were detained on visits to the United States two years ago, but eventually were freed without charge. (Reporting by Bill Rigby, editing by Leslie Gevirtz)
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