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Kentucky to Target US Citizens in Gambling Litigation

17th December 2009 8:39 am GMT

Lawyers representing the Commonwealth of Kentucky have asked the Franklin County Circuit court to add names of US citizens and companies to the lawsuit that seeks the forfeiture of 141 Internet gaming domain names, according to iMEGA.

iMEGA said Wednesday that despite requests by its attorneys to obtain the information, none of the names of the US citizens or companies to be added to the seizure effort were revealed.

"In the course of the litigation and the Commonwealth's continuing investigation, the Commonwealth has learned the identity of certain entities and individuals involved in internet gambling operations, some of whom are U.S. citizens," read the motion from Kentucky's lawyers. "The Commonwealth asks for leave to amend its Complaint to add causes of action against these individuals and entities in personam."

iMEGA and other interested parties have already successfully blocked seizure of the domains with a Court of Appeals verdict which went in their favour in January 2009. However Lawyers representing the Commonwealth of Kentucky have appealed that verdict and a decision from the Kentucky Supreme Court is pending.

"It's odd that Kentucky's lawyers would try something like this at such a late date, since we're expecting a decision on this matter from the State Supreme Court any day now," said iMEGA chairman Joe Brennan Jr. "It seems like a €˜Hail Mary pass' to me."

"We're unaware of any 'investigations' by the state attorney-general or law enforcement in Kentucky. The attorney-general himself asked to be dismissed from this suit last year. And there are no indictments or convictions that would enable Kentucky's lawyers to add the names of individual US citizens to their seizure action," said Brennan.

"If anything, this last-minute gambit highlights our argument that Kentucky and the lower court provided no due process to the domain owners, since they seem bent on continuing down that path even now."

A hearing has been scheduled for January 20th in Franklin Circuit Court to consider the motion.

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