|In America, the entrepreneur who developed and operated a short-lived online gambling site is waiting to discover if he is to be extradited to another state to face charges he violated local and Federal laws.|
Nick Jenkins developed Seattle-based Betcha.com earlier this year modelled on popular auction sites that collect transaction fees. It was designed to provide a forum for bettors to wager against one another on almost any topic, such as which actor would win an Academy Award, with individual gamblers receiving customer ratings based on payouts.
Jenkins is also an attorney and believed that, because bets were not guaranteed or backed by the site, Betcha.com was legal. He said that the site did not accept the bet, the gamblers did, but investigators from the Washington State Gambling Commission disagreed and asked him to cease operations under a new State law in July.
When Jenkins, a graduate of Georgetown University, declined by stating that Betcha.com wasn’t governed under an Internet ban approved by the State Legislature in the summer of 2006, police raided his offices and seized laptops and computer monitors. Jenkins has since sued the State and is awaiting a hearing next month.
But now, prosecutors in the southern state of Louisiana are claiming that Jenkins violated Federal and state laws against Internet-based gambling and want him to answer to these charges in their state.
Jenkins and his business partners, Josie Imlay and Peter Abrahamsen, must now wait for a decision from Governor Christine Gregoire’s office as to whether extradition can be delayed until his case is heard in his home state of Washington.
'Obviously, we think this is unfair and we're hopeful we can get this resolved,' said Jenkins. 'We think our case is a good one.'