CANADIAN ONLINE GAMBLING SECTOR TUMBLES AFTER US CRACKDOWN

19 July 2006

TORONTO (CP) – Shares in Canadian online gambling companies fell Tuesday amid fears that a U.S. crackdown on Internet gaming may spread and affect revenue from firms doing business south of the border.

Shares in software firm CryptoLogic Inc. (TSX:CRY) tumbled $2.69, or 10.8 per cent, to close at $22.19 on the Toronto Stock Exchange, while Fun Technologies Inc. (TSX:FUN), an online gambling firm, was down five cents at $5.35.

Shares in Las Vegas From Home.com, or LVFH (TSXV:LVH), the parent company of Action Poker Gaming Inc. closed off three cents, or 15 per cent, at 17 cents on the TSX Venture Exchange, and Parlay Entertainment Inc. (TSXV:PEI) fell four cents, or 2.5 per cent, to $1.51.

Vancouver-based Chartwell Technology Inc. (TSX:CWH) was down two cents to $2.35, before rebounding to close unchanged at $2.37. ESI Entertainment Systems (TSX:ESY) fell two cents to $2.97, and Great Canadian Gaming (TSX:GCD), a Richmond, B.C.-based casino operator, closed at $11.12, off 37 cents or 3.2 per cent.

The declines followed news that 11 people, including the CEO of a big offshore gambling website, were charged with conspiracy, racketeering and fraud in the United States.

BetOnSports chief executive David Carruthers and four other defendants were arrested last weekend on charges stemming from sports bets allegedly collected from U.S. residents.

The U.S. Justice Department is seeking the forfeiture of $4.5 billion US as well as…..

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