SBD/Issue 220/Law & Politics

BetOnSports.com Shuttering Most Operations, Moving To Asia

BetOnSports.com Shutting
Down Most Of Its Operations

BetOnSports.com, the sports gambling Web site indicted by U.S. prosecutors last month, told employees Thursday “that it planned to shut down most of its operations,” according to Matt Richtel of the N.Y. TIMES. BetOnSports spokesperson Kevin Smith said that 800 employees in Costa Rica and Antigua “would be losing their jobs.” Smith added that the company “planned to refocus its business on other parts of the world, notably Asia,” as it wants to “signal to investors that it is a responsible operation.” BetOnSports and several execs last month were indicted on 22 counts “accusing them of running an illegal Internet gambling operation.” Prosecutors said that they would seek a $4.5B penalty. A federal judge granted a temporary restraining order prohibiting the company “from taking bets from [U.S.] residents,” which account for 70-80% of all action. The U.S. House recently passed legislation “to strengthen the laws against operating Internet casinos,” but the Senate has not voted on it (N.Y. TIMES, 8/11). A telephone operator for BetOnSports said, “Just because BetOnSports is going under doesn’t mean the whole industry is going under” (N.Y. POST, 8/11).

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