Wednesday November 5,2014 : NEW JERSEY A.G. BRINGS IN THE BIG GUNS
Top officials sign declarations in sports betting litigation.
John Hoffman, the Attorney General for the state of New Jersey, submitted federal court declarations from three regulatory organisations certifying that in terms of the latest New Jersey law on sports betting they “…will not, and legally cannot, regulate sports wagering in casinos and racetracks because the 2014 Act prohibits them from doing so.”
The declarations were signed by the chiefs of the Casino Control Commission, the Division of Gaming Enforcement, and the Racing Commission and form part of the state’s strategy to overcome the legal objections of the national sporting leagues to New Jersey introducing intrastate sports betting.
Claiming the declarations constitute "an insurmountable factual bar", AG Hoffman submitted that the temporary injunction against the implementation of sports betting in New Jersey obtained by the sports leagues last month should not be made permanent.
The declarations attack claims by the sports leagues that because the state regulates tracks and casinos, that constitutes “de facto authorisation” of sports betting at those venues, where sports betting is scheduled to take place.
Oral arguments in the case before Judge Michael Shipp are scheduled for November 20, a day before the end of the temporary injunction.
Meanwhile, a legal representative for the Thoroughbred Horseman’s Association, which supports New Jersey in its sports betting ambitions, accused the National Football League of having “unclean hands” in the matter, given the fact that a league-approved game is to be held in London, England – where such betting is legal and will take place – and that prominent footballers have been associated with fantasy sports betting.
THA legal representative Ron Riccio also referenced a recent television interview in which National Basketball Association commissioner Adam Silver expressed the view that the legalization of online betting was inevitable and that his Association was prepared to participate in a regulated regime.
Silver also said that he had seen fans placing bets from their cellphones whilst at NBA games, and Riccio said this indicated that the national association does not curtail this activity.
"….unless one has been living under a rock, what Commissioner Silver knows and understands to be true is that people enjoy betting on NBA games for a myriad of reasons,” Riccio observed.