Customs, performing a routine name check at about 11:30 p.m. EDT Sept. 6, discovered Sportingbet chairman Peter Dicks had an outstanding warrant issued by the Louisiana State Police Gaming Enforcement Division. The July 12 warrant charged Dicks, who lives in London, with gambling by computer, which is punishable by up to a year in prison. Just a week after the House passed the Internet gambling legislation, federal officials charged 11 people, including the chief executive of BetonSports, with conspiracy, racketeering, and fraud in taking sports bets from United States residents.BetonSports and three other firms were also charged in the 22-count indictment, which was unsealed July 17 in St. Louis, Mo. A federal judge ordered BetonSports to stop accepting bets placed from within the U.S.
The company's chief executive, David Carruthers, and four other defendants were arrested. The U.S. Department of Justice is seeking the forfeiture of $4.5 billion, cars, and computers from the defendants.