Hammer Falls On Another Online Gambling Payment Processor
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- Thought this was a little bit scary...seems like it will be harder and harder for us, US players... No wonder why we are losing more and more payment options...
A recent report by the Baltimore City Paper has released information surrounding yet another payment processor who has taken a hit in the federal government’s anti-online gambling crusade. According to the paper, charges have been filed against Kenneth Wienski of Missouri. These charges would include gambling crimes as well as money laundering charges.
According to the Paper, the court docket shows that Wienski is under suspicion of aiding online gambling companies in the payment of players. In the report, Wienski was said to have channeled funds through a medical billing company, as well as a check processing company.
The investigation had begun in 2006, around the time in which the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, or the UIGEA, had been passed into law. A clandestine approach to banning online gambling, the UIGEA has become a thorn in the paw of an otherwise unregulated industry in the United States.
The investigation had included the testimonies from several confidential informants. In the Paper, the informants had reportedly given incredibly specific information surrounding Wienski’s involvement in the payment processing scheme.
A court date has not yet been scheduled and Wienski has not yet made an appearance. An attorney is not listed on the docket.
Unfortunately for Wienski, players, and the USA online gambling industry on a whole, the repeal of the UIGEA has been proceeding at a snail’s pace. Tangling through the labyrinthine process or passing new legislation has left several Congressional Committee hearings in the wake of a few members of congress, though no tangible progress has yet to be made.
In 2009, the United States Department of Justice had begun wholesale crack downs on different players in the online gambling industry. Payment processors had taken the brunt of this legal assault, and one Canadian citizen had been indicted to await trial in the United States for his hand in the gambling transactions through his companies.
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- at June 01, 2010, 12:28:58
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Douglas Rennick, a Vancouver resident, was charged with bank fraud, money laundering, and illegal gambling charges when the hammer had fallen last summer. A guilty plea was entered on Tuesday, which prompted prosecutors to drop most of the charges they had placed against Rennick for his involvement in the currently unregulated industry of online gambling.
Rennick’s charges had been brought against him due to the opening of bank accounts in the United States which were used to effectuate the transference of cash from USA online gambling companies outside of the United States. Under current U.S. federal law, it is illegal for payment processors to enact these transactions.
Under the terms of his guilty plea, which stated that he had illegally processed payments for online poker rooms, he will be forced to forfeit $17 million dollars and potentially face two years imprisonment.
The Department of Justice’s scare tactics have been successful in forcing some gambling operators and payment processors out of the United States market, as seen with PartyGaming, Microgaming, Playtech, and a wide assortment of payment processors. Using the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act and the Wire Act, the Department of Justice has essentially brought a crusade upon online gambling.
The UIGEA has not yet been brought into effect, but the deadline is set for June 1st – a deadline that is right around the corner. Though legislators are currently working to repeal the UIGEA, optimism for a pre-deadline repeal is waning.
Today is the day,The historic day for online gambling...In the next few days, we will find out what will be waiting for US gamblers. I am crossing my fingers!!!
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