Australian gamblers hoping to live wager legally

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Australian gamblers could be live betting in the next 12 months, according to a report published today by the Herald Sun. Industry insiders believe that allowing in-play wagering online could provide $300M a year for the country; a marked increase over current revenue generated through telephone and brick & mortar establishments.

In addition to live betting, online poker is also expected to be cleared on a "trial basis" in the same time-frame. The Interactive Gambling Act, enacted in 2001, makes it an offense punishable up to $1.1M per day for any company providing online poker and casino games to Australian residents.

While the IGA reads sharply, no organisation has been charged with being in violation of the bill. The most notable example is Poker Stars' owned GP Information Services in Sydney; the subsidiary continues to operate unimpeded. Speaking on the challenges of enforcing the bill on companies based outside of Australia, a spokeswoman for Digital Economy Minister Stephen Conroy had the following to say:

"As the internet is a cross-jurisdictional medium, it is difficult for Australia to enforce our laws on companies not based in Australia. The Government continues to examine the regulatory approaches taken by other countries to online gambling to see what can be learnt about the best way to respond."

Despite the IGA being in place for the last decade, it was estimated that Australian gamblers lose more than $1 billion a year to online gaming sites, including Poker Stars, according to a report published by the Australian.

Players in need of sportsbook assistance are asked to write to Alternatively, players may submit a sportsbook complaint form, or dial 1-830-255-4677 during normal business hours to speak with a disputes analyst.

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