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First (Definitive) US Online Gambling Ban

The United States has always had a tempestuous relationship with online gambling, especially online sports betting. The Department of Justice tried for years to have it banned under the Federal Wire Act of 1961, which punishes the use of phone lines in the commission of a crime.

Fortunately for US bettors, the DOJ couldn’t find a  judge who thought online gambling and plotting crimes over the phone were in the same league.

So internet gambling remained in a grey area, until 2006 when lawmakers snuck the Unlawful Internet Gambling Act (UIGA) into a port security bill. For the first time, online wagering was definitely illegal in the United States.


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