|An American attorney who is taking legal action against the state of Washington claiming that its online betting ban infringes the US Constitution’s protections of interstate trade has had his court date set.|
Playing online poker in the western state is classed as a felony and lawyer and poker aficionado Lee Rousso filed suit in King County Superior Court in an effort to overturn the State’s ban on Internet gambling last month.
Rousso, the Poker Players Alliance’s representative for Washington, has been told that he will get his day in court on September 21. It is expected that he will file his next brief by August 24, giving him about a month before the hearing.
The State ban was passed by lawmakers with much support and went into effect in June of 2006. It extended an earlier embargo on gambling by telephones or telegraphs and increased the crime from a gross misdemeanour to a felony, in the same criminal class as child abusers.
No one has yet been prosecuted under the ban but Rousso's Seattle-based lawsuit argues that the law unfairly protects the in-State gambling industry, including card rooms and casinos. He stated that if unsuccessful, he would push for another change in State law to make Internet gambling legal again.