The USA DoJ (Department of Justice) gave poker players an unexpected Christmas present when they released a statement on the Wire Act.
The DoJ had made a decision on a case of internet ticket selling for Lotteries but also commented about their latest position on internet poker.
The DoJ’s statement is to do with the federal Wire Act of 1961 and not the UIGEA but it is very important.
We conclude that interstate transmissions of wire communications that do not relate to a “sporting event or contest,” 18 U.S.C. § 1084(a), fall outside of the reach of the Wire Act. Because the proposed New York and Illinois lottery proposals do not involve wagering on sporting events or contests, the Wire Act does not, in our view, prohibit them. Given this conclusion, we have not found it necessary to address the Wire Act’s interaction with UIGEA, or to analyze UIGEA in any other respect.
Good news for Jesus?
How will this effect the criminal cases happening at the moment involving Full Tilt Poker? Not much by itself as the indictments are to do with the UIGEA and not the wire act.
People have long argued that the Wire Act does not effect internet poker as the transactions are not illegal and now the DoJ have confirmed this.
But who knows what long term this may do in the Full Tilt, AP/UB and other financial indictment cases going on.
We conclude that the Criminal Division’s premise is incorrect and that the Wire Act prohibits only the transmission of communications related to bets or wagers on sporting events or contests