Two Persons Plead Guilty in International Internet Sports Wagering

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Friday, February 1, 2002
Bruce Zagaris
On November 3, 2001, two individuals, who owned and operated Gold Medal Sports, an online sports book that operates out of Curacao, Netherlands Antilles, pleaded guilty to various charges of gambling and tax. The U.S. Attorneys Office in the Western District of Wisconsin (Madison) alleges that Gold Medal Sports received more than $ 400 million in bets during a four-year period. The company used an Internet site it established and also received bets over the telephone form persons in the U.S. One of the elements of elements of evidence used in the prosecution was that an undercover IRS Criminal Investigation Division (IRS-CID) agent placed a wager by phone concerning the Green Bay Baker-Seattle Seahawk Monday Night Football game on November 1, 1999. Prosecutors were then able to charge a felony violation of the Federal Wire Act of 1961 for operating a gambling business and accepting sports wager over phone lines. The weak link that remains in efforts to combat Internet wagering is that in many foreign countries Internet wagering is not criminalized, but is even encouraged as a legitimate business operation that has significant economic.