AGA details plans to tackle illegal sports betting in US

The American Gaming Association (AGA) has issued a set of recommendations in an effort to combat illegal sports betting across the United States.

As reported by iGaming Business, the AGA in September criticised the current federal ban on sport betting in the US saying it is “failing” to stop illegal activities.

Sports betting is only legal in four states across the country, but such wagering activates are commonplace in most jurisdictions.

To combat this illegal betting, the AGA will build a broad coalition to determine if a rational alternative to current betting law could work, with strict regulation and rigorous consumer protections amongst the ideas suggested by the organisation.

This effort, which will be rolled out next year, will include robust research as well as aggressive communications and partnerships with various stakeholders and voices in sports betting such as gaming leaders, regulators, legislators and professional sports leagues.

Jim Murren, chairman of the AGA and chairman and chief executive of MGM Resorts International, said: “The culmination of a thorough process within our industry positions us to work with a wide variety of stakeholders who agree that rampant, unregulated and illegal sports betting is a threat to consumers and the sports we enjoy.

“As the head of the largest private sector employer in Nevada, I’m confident that the entertainment experience we provide in Las Vegas – which is unmatched anywhere else in the world – can continue to excel even as our country takes a fresh look at our approach to sports betting.”

Confirmation of this new approach comes shortly after the AGA announced that it is to work with the FBI to combat various illegal gambling in the country.

As part of the AGA’s ‘Stop Illegal Gambling – Play it Safe’ campaign, the body will utilise the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center that allows the public to report tips and complaints related to online crimes.

Geoff Freeman, AGA president and chief executive, said: “Our effort with the FBI will help us make significant headway in the fight against illegal gambling.

“In particular, the Internet Crime Complaint Center will be an invaluable tool for people in every state to report tips about the multi-billion dollar illegal gambling sector that preys on consumers, steals jobs and deprives state and local governments of revenues generated by the legal, regulated casino gaming industry.

J. Chris Warrener, deputy assistant director of the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division, added: “This joint initiative leverages the Internet Crime Complaint Center network to address transnational organised crime groups that use illegal gambling, most notably internet sports gambling, as a means to finance other forms of violent and illicit activities.”


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