It is being reported that about $33 million in poker winnings have been seized by U.S. banks. The U.S. government had asked the banks to seize the funds which is owed to some 27,000 poker customers. The investigation started when some of the checks being issued to winners had bounced,  which caused the government to investigate.

According to an article over at the N.Y. Times, it states that:

Nelson Rose, a professor of law at Whittier Law School in Costa Mesa, Calif., and an specialist on gambling law, called the government’s move a surprising and significant new effort to police wagering on the Internet.

“It’s very aggressive, and I think it’s a gamble on the part of the prosecutors,” Mr. Rose said. He added that it was not clear what law would cover the seizure of money belonging to poker players, as opposed to the money of the companies involved.

Past government efforts have focused on sports betting on the Internet, not on poker playing, Mr. Rose said. He noted that he and other legal authorities, and some courts, have considered poker to be different from sports betting because poker involves a transaction between people, not a bettor and the casino.

Mr. Rose said it was not illegal in New York, where the legal action was brought, for a person to place a bet. But other states do outlaw such activity, he said.

It makes one wonder why the government is getting involved in these gambling operations. Shouldn’t this be left to the states to prosecute? Instead of trying to shut down the casino’s why not tax them? LOL

Comments welcome.

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