Legal  & Regulatory news sponsored by Sportradar

France has taken a step towards ending its 471-year old gaming monopoly today after regulatory authority ARJEL issued seventeen online gaming licences to eleven different operators including FDJ, PMU, bwin, BetClic and Everest Gaming.

The European Sports Security Association (ESSA) has renewed its cooperation agreement with football authority FIFA's Early Warning System (EWS), ensuring that betting activity is monitored during the upcoming football World Cup and future FIFA tournaments.

The Estonian Tax and Customs Board has issued an online gaming licence to Triogames, bringing the total number of licensed online gaming operators in Estonia to three. At the same time the country's blacklist of international online gaming sites has been expanded, with close to 300 sites now subject to IP blocking.

In a boost to the country's land-based casinos, Switzerland's Federal Court has ruled that Texas Hold'em poker tournaments can no longer be classified a game of skill and subsequently cannot be played outside of state-approved casinos unless played between friends and family.

UK Bookmaker William Hill said Wednesday that it is in the process of withdrawing from the French market following introduction of new online gaming laws, adding that the move is not expected to materially impact earnings in 2010.

Legalised intra-state online gaming in New Jersey moved a step closer yesterday after the state's Senate Government, Wagering, Tourism and Historic Preservation Committee approved a bill which proposes to authorise online gaming at Atlantic City casinos.

Alabama's Supreme Court has ruled that the state's attorney general cannot take control over Governor Bob Riley's anti-gambling task force, providing a boost to the Governor's fight to shut down electronic bingo casinos within the state.

"Europe-proof" is how Dutch gaming monopoly operator De Lotto has described national gambling laws after the European Court of Justice said Thursday that restrictions on gambling imposed in the Netherlands could be justified under European law.

Acting on information gathered from the Europe-wide betting probe into match-fixing by German authorities last year, Switzerland's Football Association has suspended nine football players from the Swiss league for at least one year for alleged match-fixing, with five players suspended indefinitely.

Banks, credit card companies and other financial institutions in Norway are being asked to block transactions to and from foreign gaming operators following enactment of legislation Tuesday prohibiting online gambling payments.

New Hampshire's Gaming Study Commission has released its final report on expanded gambling and its likely impact on the state, finding that the state would benefit by an estimated $89m per year from the opening of a gaming facility, despite social costs of $60m per year, while also creating over 2,000 new jobs for state residents.