Online gambling is the wagering of money or something of value on an event, either physically or electronically. It includes sports betting, casinos, poker, and virtual poker. Some states have legalized these activities, while others have not. In this article, we will outline the current laws governing internet gambling in the U.S.
There are seven federal criminal statutes that are implicated by illegal internet gambling. They include the Wire Act, the Illegal Gambling Business Act, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), and the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act.
The Wire Act prohibits the use of the Internet to engage in unlawful gambling on sporting events. Some state officials have expressed concern that the Internet could be used to transport illegal gambling into their jurisdictions. However, these concerns have not proven successful.
Section 1956 of the federal code prohibits the use of the Internet to engage illegally in gambling. This is a complex law that covers several separate crimes. These crimes include laundering for international purposes, concealing, and laundering to promote illicit activity. The prosecution of these crimes has raised constitutional questions.
Section 1956 also creates a new offense, laundering for law enforcement stings. This crime involves a specific set of circumstances, such as concealing, and placing five people at all times for thirty days.
While Illinois has the potential to legalize online casinos, it is unclear when this will happen. Online sports betting is now legal in Indiana. It was the first state to offer sports betting online, and has a better regulatory structure than Illinois.