|A husband and wife duo from California who piled up over $100,000 (£62,390) in debts by gambling online are now suing several credit card companies, including Visa International and its USA division, MasterCard International, Discover Financial Services, Retailers National Bank, Citibank and Western Union Holdings – a list which reads like a Who’s who of U.S banking and financial services.|
Their claim – The above sued companies processed their online gambling transactions in California which is of questionable legality and violated a state prohibition against providing credit for gambling. They say, if these companies didn’t authorize their credit cards online, they wouldn’t have been in debt.
The couple under scrutiny, Lisa and Andrew Harding raked in the huge debts between 2002 to mid-2003, which prompted a lawsuit from credit card company Retailers National Bank for failing to pay their overdue bills. Last week, the Hardings filed a counter lawsuit against a host of credit card and banking companies, which enabled their transactions.
Ira Rothken, attorney for the Hardings from Alameda County, California defends saying that this lawsuit will set a precedent and will stop such companies making money off of illegal gambling loans in California. The couple she claims are suffering because they (the companies) didn’t enforce their anti-online wagering policies.
This lawsuit is the third in line for Rothken who in two earlier lawsuits prompted Discover Card and Visa to reduce the debt amount of their clients who were gambling online.