The US Gambling Industry shifted gears in the fight against illegal gambling. 2022 was a year when all areas of regulation were called to work together against non-regulated players.
The American Gaming Association has been vocal throughout the year calling for stronger action to combat the illegal gambling market. The association sent a letter in April to Merrick Garland , the US Department of Justice Attorney general, describing the negative effects unregulated gambling has on state economies and consumers.
Bill Miller is the President and CEO at the AGA. He stated that while illegal gambling was a problem for many years, its brazen and coordinated nature–both online as well in local communities–has raised the issue to the point where it requires federal attention.
We urge the Department of Justice to prioritize taking action…to protect American consumers and crack down on illegal operators.
It demanded that the DoJ inform the public about the legal market as well as the dangers posed by illegal operators. The letter urged the DoJ to investigate unlicensed offshore operators and clarify that skill-games must conform with AML standards. Those who do not comply will face severe sanctions.
a Congressional Letter sent in June to Attorney General Garland by 28 Members of Congress, which supported the AGA document. It identified illegal operators and called them “predatory operation” because they “expose our constituents financial or cyber vulnerability.”
In a letter to Congress, the DoJ was warned that they “cannot ignore the fact that an illegal market thrives and operates unfettered”.
It stated that “illegal operators do not want to help bettors gamble responsibly. They don’t provide checks such as budgets or time limits. The illegal operators do not follow federal and state financial regulations. This means that customers cannot be certain if their data is safe or whether they will get their winnings.
These websites are open to all ages, so children as well as young adults may be exploited.
These illegal sportsbooks don’t help to promote integrity in sporting events by sharing information with leagues about unusual betting patterns and insider betting.
The Congressional letter received support from the AGA and Sabrina Perel was the NFL’sVice president and Chief Compliance Officer.
Near the close of the year, AGA released research that highlighted the financial impact on the unregulated gaming market. It revealed that Americans lost $510.9bn annually to illegal operators and $13.3bn in taxes revenue to gaming states. The legal gaming industry suffered a loss of $44.2bn in revenue.
The research revealed that vertically, legal igaming was most affected in terms of handling, and states were losing the most taxes due to unregulated machines.
Miller demanded that all sectors of legal gambling industry come together in an effort to eliminate the unregulated and illegal gaming market.
He stated: “All stakeholders–policymakers, law enforcement, regulators, legal businesses–must work together to root out the illegal and unregulated gambling market.
We are in this fight for the long-term to support consumers and communities as well as defend law-abiding employees of the industry.
With the expected push from the regulated sector in 2023, the foundation has been laid for fighting illegal operators.