MORE WARRANTS FOR ONLINE GAMBLING'S SPORTINGBET STAFF

27 September 2006

SCOTSMAN.COM

LONDON (Reuters) – Louisiana is determined to stop Internet gambling companies from taking bets in the southern U.S. state and has issued four arrest warrants for staff at Sportingbet , a police officer told the Financial Times.

Captain Joe Lentini, head of the casino section of Louisiana’s Police Gaming Enforcement division, said in an interview published on Wednesday the warrants included one for Peter Dicks, former chairman of the UK-listed company.
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Dicks is due to appear in a New York court on Thursday to hear if he will be extradited to Louisiana, the newspaper said.

The other three warrants were for Sportingbet executives or directors, Lentini said, declining to reveal names.

In a worrying sign for the lucrative online gambling business, the officer told the FT he was also investigating other companies and their bosses were at risk of arrest.

“We have agents all over the state working on this daily. There are other sites we’re looking into,” Lentini said.

Louisiana is one of a number of U.S. states that prohibits Internet gambling, which has become a hot topic in recent weeks amid fears of a crackdown by the United States.

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