Kahnawake works with NJ regulator to shut illegal operators out of US

Discussions between the two regulators have concluded with a deal that will ensure no websites operating under a KGC licence will be available to US players in states where these companies are not authorised to operate, effective September 30th.

The regulators moved to address the issue after the DGE discovered that hosting solutions provider Continent 8 may have provided services to illegal iGaming sites, specifically Bovada.

Founded as Bodog by Calvin Ayre in 2000, the business was sold to Morris Mohawk Gaming Group and continued to operate under the Bodog brand until 2011, when it was rebranded as Bovada.

In August this year its owners agreed to sell the operation to Lynton Limited, holding company of the Ignition Casino site. As a result of the agreement between the KGC and DGE, Bovada and any other illegal gaming providers will no longer be able to operate from Continent 8’s Kahnawake datacentre.

The KGC will also take action against any applicants or licensees it finds to be taking wagers illegally from US players, in order to further deter companies from targeting the US.

A tribal reserve of the Mohawk Indians located in southern Quebec, Kahnawake established one of the gaming industry’s first regulatory frameworks for online gambling in 1999.

“The Division is pleased to have the KGC's assistance as a fellow regulator and looks forward to working together in the future,” DGE director Dave Rebuck commented. “We were able to reach a series of agreements that are amenable to all of the parties involved and satisfy the Division's regulatory concerns.

“The Division appreciates the KGC's commitment and looks forward to its continued cooperation in the fight against unlicensed Internet gaming traffic,” he continued. “This agreement is an important step in ensuring the integrity of Internet gaming operations in New Jersey and helps ensure that online gaming patrons can play on fair, regulated sites.”

KGC chairman Mark Jocks said the dialogue between his organisation and the New Jersey regulator had been “direct and productive.”

“We understand the DGE’s concerns about online gaming sites operating in New Jersey and elsewhere in the US without being properly authorized by a regulatory body in those jurisdictions,” Jocks explained.

“The DGE understands and respects Kahnawàke’s significant accomplishments in the online gaming industry over the past 17 years - grounded on the exercise of Mohawk jurisdiction,” Grand Chief Joseph Tokwiro Norton added. “We consider the strengthening of our working relationship with the DGE to be a positive development for our respective jurisdictions, and for the online gaming industry.”


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