As of last week, the “Final Four” of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament was finalized. While many devoted fans of the remaining teams will be in high spirits this upcoming weekend, another less identifiable fan base will be cheering just as loud. This group of fans has money illegally wagered on the outcome of the games.
According to the National Gaming Impact Study Commission, $380 billion a year is spent on illegal sports betting. The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, a federal law, makes it unlawful for a person to sponsor, operate, advertise, or promote a lottery, sweepstakes, or other betting, gambling, or wagering scheme based, directly or indirectly on one or more competitive games in which amateur or professional athletes participate. Currently, only four states (Nevada, Delaware, Montana, and Oregon) have legal forms of sports betting.
However, a state senator from New Jersey has recently filed a federal law suit seeking to overturn The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 and allow the state of New Jersey an opportunity to profit from the betting. The lawsuit argues that the federal law is unconstitutional because it treats the four identified states differently from the rest. States across the country are looking into gambling as a source of income amid the current economic times.
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