The federal government has been fighting to protect its citizens from the dangers of online gambling. Federal prosecutors have warned that Internet gambling operators could face prosecution, and U.S. marshals seized $3.2 million from Discovery Communications. In addition, the company agreed to launch a $3 million public service campaign. However, the legality of online gambling has been questioned.
Federal law does not prohibit the activity of placing bets or wagers online, but it does prohibit the use of interstate facilities for gambling. Regardless of whether an individual is a citizen of a foreign country, the gambling activity may still be illegal under the Travel Act. Nevertheless, state authorities are wary of the dangers posed by illegal gambling on the Internet.
There are two main types of internet gambling. The first is illegal and involves seven federal criminal statutes. The other is considered a violation of the Wire Act. Internet gambling involves betting on sporting events, contests, or other activities that use the Internet. In addition, gambling business activities violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).