|Police in Quebec are currently investigating a number of online casinos operating from the Kahnawake First Nations reserve, located just outside of Montreal. The investigation will seek to conclude whether the online casinos are legal, and whether police may have to consider a rewrite of current legislation to address the issue.|
At the moment no legislation exists that actually prohibits online gambling, but without official licensing provincial law enforcement officials maintain that the sites are currently illegal. The Mohawks who inhabit the Kahnawake reservation disagree with formal government legislation, citing their rights over their own land as the right to essentially govern themselves.
This approach to gambling hasn’t stopped police closing down other casinos on Kahnawake land before, however a decision from the government on this matter will be not only legal, but also political in nature, something that could work either for or against the Kahnawake Mohawks.
“The only one who has the right to operate a casino in Quebec is the government.” Said Francois Moisan, spokesman for Quebecs alcohol, racing and gaming board, “Others, such as religious groups and charities, can get licenses but our mandate is to control the licensing.”
The police investigation was launched last year at the request of the Public Security Minister.