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US To Maintain Gambling Ban Despite WTO Decision

Law, 2007-05-05, by TwoGun

The United States has officially announced that it has no intentions of complying with the WTO's internet gambling ruling. The international trade organization found the United States to be in breach of its policies due to the US laws that forbid all offshore internet gambling but do permit interstate betting on horse racing.

Antigua and other nations can now seek damages from the US at the WTO. However, the US believes that it is ridiculous to expect it to permit any sort of offshore internet gambling since it claims this sort of gambling has been illegal for decades.

Antigua raised a dispute with the US several years ago. The WTO sided with Antigua. The trade organization believed that the United States had the right to prohibit online gambling only if the US treated American and offshore companies equally.

In the case of horse racing, the United States permits American companies but prohibits offshore companies from taking online bets, which the WTO found to be a breach of its trade agreements.

For the US to have complied with the ruling, it needed to have banned domestic operators from taking online horse racing bets or allowed all international operators to take online horse racing bets from Americans. Neither of these scenarios would have really helped Antiguan US-facing internet gambling companies anyway since most of these firms focus on sports betting, online poker, or online casino games.

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