IRG Faces License Suspension in Oregon

IRG Faces License Suspension in Oregon
The Oregon Racing Commission has notified International Racing Group that it intends to suspend its state operating license as an advance deposit wagering company, but parent company says it is working to prevent such an event.

The commission met in a special executive session Oct. 19 and later issued the following statement:

“During the special teleconference held Friday, October 19, 2007, the Oregon Racing Commission (ORC) voted to issue a Notice of Intent to suspend the license of International Racing Group (IRG), a multi-jurisdictional simulcasting and interactive wagering totalizator hub.”

Executive commissioner Randy Evers told The Blood-Horse that he could not immediately comment beyond the statement. He said the commission hopes to provide more explanation in a news release next week.

IRG, an-offshore telephone rebate ADW, is involved in a federal investigation being conducted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Las Vegas. Youbet has claimed in U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings that the investigation involves IRG customers and possibly a former owner.

Youbet previously reported that $1.5 million in three IRG bank accounts in Nevada were seized by federal officials in conjunction with an Oct. 4 search at Youbet’s corporate headquarters in Woodland Hills, Calif. IRG has continued to operate as ADW, but customers are being told they can neither withdraw nor deposit funds from their accounts.

Youbet spokesman Hud Englehart said the company will take necessary steps to correct the situation with the commission.

“It has to do with technical issues and issues of non-compliance, and we are working to cure it,” Englehart said.

Englehart said the Oregon statutes require an ADW to have an active bank account, and when the federal government seized the funds, it put IRG into a non-compliant state.

“It’s time to present our case and take the necessary steps to be in compliance,” he said.

Youbet and IRG are licensed separately with the Oregon Racing Commission and operate wagering hubs in the state, along with other ADWs.

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