DoJ Announces Preparation to Repeal the 1961 Wire Act Ruling

DoJ Announces Preparation to Repeal the 1961 Wire Act Ruling

Department of Justice Confirms its Intention to Appeal the New Hampshire 1961 Wire Act Ruling

The DoJ, Department of Justice, confirmed its intention to appeal the New Hampshire ruling on the 1961 Wire Act. The DoJ filed its notice to appeal with the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit asking the ruling made by the New Hampshire District Court Judge to be overturned. The verdict was issued back in June by District Court Judge Paul Barbadoro. Barbadoro ruled that the 1961 Wire Act only applied to sports betting activities after the New Hampshire Lottery filed a legal challenge against the DoJ’s stance on the Wire Act.

The Wire Act says the use of wire communication facilities to transmit wagers or bets across state lines are prohibited. The DoJ submitted its interpretation of the Act saying it only applied to sports betting back in 2011. With this interpretation, many states were able to start offering online lottery and gaming services, but a different view on the interpretation was given in January of this year by the Office of Legal Counsel. Assistant Attorney General Stephen Engel wrote an opinion regarding the Wire Act saying while the Act isn’t a “model of artful drafting” all of the Act’s prohibitions stretch beyond sports gambling.


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