October 8th, 2008
By Samantha Williams
Online gambling sites are facing innumerable challenges from the law makers of certain countries to curtail their activities striking at the very root of them. The main contention of those who oppose to online gambling is that the sites are not following fair and ethical trade practices in accepting wagers in monies whether it is U.S. dollars or in Euros.
The same argument goes for collection of revenues due to the tax collection authorities of these governments, unlike in the case of offline gambling casinos and clubs where the very physical presence of the outlets enables checking evasion of any tax liabilities. This is countered by the supporters of online gambling sites, their associations and legal representatives that adequate checks and balances are already there, adopted by the websites to ensure fair-play in these matters and online gambling should be allowed to carry on business unobtrusively.
There is another dimension emerging on the legal wrangles between online gambling sites and authorities of law-making. This is completely concerned with online betting on sports events. There are quite a large number of online gambling sites engaged purely on betting of monies on an array of sports like soccer, tennis, cricket, baseball and the like. The monetary transactions on these betting on sports run into trillions of dollars and Euros annually.
For decades earlier in the western countries, betting on sports events has been going on even before the introduction of the Internet. Like Inter-venue betting on horse racing, the gambling outfits were accepting wagers from the punters of their neighborhood on major sports events across the world, wherever they were held. The size and measure of betting were enlarged to proportions of unimaginable magnitude when the cyber-world came into being. Sitting at home any one had the facility of betting on the favorite side of any sports easily and all the wagering monies when pooled together offered an attractive dividend to each punter’s bet on winning. This gradually grew into giving room for complaints from many quarters that pre-fixing the results of the events by manipulation of vested interests and unfair and unethical practices of gambling had started in the business.
In this background the latest complaint has come up against online betting of Grand Slam Tennis Tournaments such as French Open. The organizers of French Open have opened up a landmark case in the Liege court of Eastern Belgium and Parris claiming that the online betting sites have stained the reputation of the championship tournament on the clay-court of Roland Garros.
The French Tennis Federation has claimed that the very integrity of the Tennis match is at stake because of such unethical practices being followed by the organizations of online betting. They have cited many instances of foul-play in the trade, including a glaring example, which took place in August 2007 in one of the major tennis match held in Poland. Their claim is backed by declarations of players that they were approached for fixing matches with hefty sums of money offered. The law suit is against three popular betting organizations, and praying for an injunction to stop making betting on French Open and fine of large amount for violation on a daily basis. The sports lovers and players of online bets eagerly await the outcome of this landmark case which will have a very wide impact on the online betting industry.