Kentucky Supreme Court Hears Online Gambling Case

Can Ky seize 141 domains?

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The Kentucky Supreme Court heard arguments on Thursday on whether the Common Wealth of Kentucky has the power to seize 141 domains belonging to online gambling sites.

Previously a Franklin Circuit Court Judge ruled for the state saying it was allowed to seize the domain names, but the Court of Appeals overturned that decision. The case was then appealed to the Supreme Court.

Jon L. Fleischaker, attorney for the Interactive Media Entertainment &Gaming Association (iMEGA) called the efforts by Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear to block the state residents’ use of Internet gambling websites "intellectually dishonest."

"They made up a process that is totally lacking in due process," Fleischaker said during arguments before the Supreme Court.

Fleischaker, along with attorneys representing Sportsbook.com and the Interactive Gaming Council, asked the Supreme Court to uphold an earlier decision by the Kentucky Court of Appeals, blocking the seizure of 141 domain names belonging to online gambling sites.

In a 2-to-1 decision, the Appeals Court in January rejected the governor’s claim that Kentucky players and the Internet gambling sites had violated state law. The decision also held that a lower court had erred when it applied the state’s "gambling devices" statute to justify the seizure of the Internet domain names.


"[I]t stretches credulity to conclude that a series of numbers, or Internet address, can be said to constitute a "machine or any mechanical or other devicedesigned and manufactured primarily for use in connection with gambling," Judge Michelle M. Keller wrote in her majority opinion.

A decision is not expected before the end of the year.

Kentucky Supreme Court Hears Online Gambling Case
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