|US politicians have launched a fresh bid to stop overseas internet gambling websites reaching American web users. The new bill being introduced in the House of Representatives aims to extend existing laws which ban interstate telephone gambling.|
The planned US legislation would prohibit a gambling business from accepting credit cards, cheques, wire and internet transfers, and would set a maximum prison sentence of five years for violations.
Rick Boucher, a Democratic member for Virginia said, ‘These internet gambling websites typically operate offshore and often serve as a prime vehicle for money laundering and other criminal enterprises.’
However the legislation, supported by the Democrats and the Republicans, could fall foul of a World Trade Organisation (WTO) ruling which states that the US must not block online gambling sites based overseas.
The WTO made the ruling last August in response to a complaint made against the US by the Caribbean island of Antigua, home to several internet betting sites.