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Federal Online Gambling Bill Reintroduced

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BY CHRIS SIEROTY
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL
Posted: Mar. 18, 2011 | 2:02 a.m.
Attempts to regulate Internet gaming on a federal level continued Thursday with the introduction of a bipartisan bill that would establish federal licensing and regulation of online wagering, specifically poker.
The bill, co-authored by Rep. John Campbell, R-Calif., and House Financial Services Ranking Member Barney Frank, D-Mass., reflects a measure that passed through committee in July.
“Given that millions of Americans currently play online poker, states across the country are recognizing the value in licensing and regulating the game and many are introducing their own laws … while collecting millions in tax revenue,” said Poker Player Alliance Chairman and former Sen. Alfonse D’Amato, R-N.Y.
Messages left late Thursday with Reps. Campbell and Frank were not returned. The federal bill was introduced about a week after Assemblyman William Horne, D-Las Vegas, introduced a bill back by PokerStars that could lead to Nevada legalizing Internet poker.
Key provisions of the federal bill introduced Thursday include thorough vetting of potential licensees and creation of a list of illegal operators and mandatory implementation of technologies to protect against underage gambling using the commercial and government databases used for online banking to verify age and identity.
The measure would also establish requirements for operators to set daily, weekly or monthly limits on deposits and losses to monitor and detect individuals with excessive gaming habits.
High standards to thwart fraud, abuse and cheating to ensure fair games for customers; regulation to prevent money laundering; and, processes to prevent tax avoidance.
Instead of a patchwork of state laws protecting only players in those states, D’Amato urged Congress “to step up and pass federal legislation.”

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Man admits killing wife in argument over $700 online gambling debt

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By Keith Doucette, The Canadian Press | The Canadian Press - Wed, 2 Mar, 2011 5:54 PM ESTHALIFAX - The husband of an elementary school teacher has admitted strangling his wife to death more than five years ago, closing a case that was kept in the public spotlight by a high-profile campaign led by her sisters.

Jason MacRae, 37, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder Wednesday after an extensive investigation by police in Halifax into the slaying of Paula Gallant.

Investigators had struggled to find clues in the 36-year-old woman’s death until they announced in August they had charged her husband with first-degree murder.

Anyone convicted of second-degree murder must serve at least 10 years in prison before being eligible for parole.

Police say Gallant died on Dec. 27, 2005, and her body was found the next day. The Nova Scotia Supreme Court heard the cause of death was asphyxiation due to strangulation.

In an agreed statement of facts, court heard MacRae told undercover police officers that he got into an argument with his wife over debt on a Visa card.

It says Gallant was working at a computer in the couple’s basement when MacRae hit her in the head with a two-by-four. A struggle ensued in the laundry room and MacRae told the officers he strangled Gallant with his hands.

Gallant is quoted in the statement as saying: “What are you doing? Stop.”

The statement also says that MacRae admitted to undercover officers that the thought of killing Gallant had crossed his mind before.

“Honestly I thought about it before, but I didn’t think I would ever do it,” he is quoted as saying. “It just happened.”

Halifax Regional Police Chief Frank Beazley said at the time of MacRae’s arrest that key information was brought to the attention of investigators in the spring of 2009. MacRae was described by Beazley as a suspect early in the investigation.

Gallant’s body was found in the trunk of her car outside Beechville-Lakeside-Timberlea Elementary School, where she had taught since 1999. She was a Grade 3 teacher.

The married mother of one had left home to go shopping earlier in the day. At the time of her death, she and MacRae had a one-year-old daughter.

A campaign spearheaded by Gallant’s sisters, Lynn Gallant-Blackburn and Lana Kenny, kept public attention on the case.

After Gallant’s death, the sisters started a letter-writing campaign to newspapers, hoping to rekindle dormant memories as the police investigation appeared to stall. The family also pushed the Nova Scotia Justice Department to increase the reward for information leading to an arrest and spoke out publicly about violence against women.

Poll shows support for sports betting in N.J.

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NEWARK, N.J. - According to a new poll, a majority of New Jerseyans favor legalizing sports betting in the state and across the nation, but are opposed to Internet gambling. The Fairleigh Dickinson University Public Mind poll said 53 percent of 801 registered voters surveyed said people should be allowed to bet on sports such as football and basketball. A majority also supported allowing sports betting at casinos and racetracks.

Most of those polled favored legalized sports betting in all states, saying people bet on games anyway, so the government should tax it. Gov. Christie has opposed legalizing sports betting, and has not decided whether to sign recent legislation that would legalize Internet gambling. -

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