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US Treasury Introduce New Guidelines to Battle Illicit Sports Betting

- December 24, 2014 By Nemanja L. -

US Treasury ups the pressure on casinos to prevent money laundering

US Treasury and IRS inform casinos they will have to report any potentially illegal sports wagers.

The US Treasury Department is set to introduce special guidelines for casinos in an attempt to further stamp out illegal sports betting and prevent illicit funds from moving through the country’s financial system.

The Department’s anti-money laundering unit will require casinos to notify them of potential illegal Sportsbook wagers as they hope to stop billions of dollars with unknown origin from entering the US banking system.

Red Flags to Signal Unusually Large Bets

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) is set to outline special “red flags” for casinos that would signal potential illegal sports bets and in turn be reported to the authorities.

According to sources, the flags are meant to mark unusually large wagers that would suggest involvement of illegal betting syndicates or online betting websites laying off bets in Nevada sportsbooks.

The Criminal Investigation Division of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has been working hard of late on identifying money laundering risks linked to illegal sports wagering.

Back in June, the IRS agents spoke at a Las Vegas conference, warning US casinos that allow illegal sports betting activity they will be subject of a major crackdown in the near future.

The agents went on to reveal that the amount of illegal gambling funds flowing into casinos by illicit bookmakers had grown to tens of billions of dollars per annum, even exceeding the money laundered by drug traffickers.

The Anti-Money Laundering Efforts Already Producing Results

Over the past year or so, the US Treasury Department and Justice Department have stepped up their efforts to prevent casinos from taking illegal sports betting wagers, with Las Vegas Sands Corp agreeing to pay $47 million back in August 2013 as a settlement for failure to comply with anti-money laundering guidelines.

Sportsbook operator CG Technology also reached a $5.5 million settlement with Nevada gaming regulators last year having failed to notify the authorities of millions of dollars worth of illegal messenger wagers.

The pressure on casinos to comply with said laws and regulations continues to increase, while the IRS has even started training new personnel with a view of allocating more agents to the criminal investigation division specifically targeting US casinos.

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