Washington, DC – More than 30 law enforcement leaders from across the country gathered today at the American Gaming Association’s (AGA) first-ever Law Enforcement Summit to better understand the massive illegal sports betting market in the U.S and what steps can be taken to address it.
In a robust town hall discussion, law enforcement spoke of the illegal sports betting market as a significant problem and of regulation as a potential solution. Based on input from the Summit, the AGA’s Illegal Gambling Advisory Board will author an after-action report that will serve as a guide for stakeholders – including policymakers, regulators and sports leagues – to develop potential solutions.
“The illegal sports betting market is a growing problem and no group is more credible in carrying that message and identifying a solution than members of law enforcement,” said Geoff Freeman, president and CEO of the AGA. “Today’s Summit highlighted that the illegal sports betting market funds large criminal enterprises and fails to protect the integrity of the sports we all love. It’s time for a modernized approach that will support law enforcement around the country.”
“The reality is that illegal sports betting is a growing and dangerous problem; the scope is massive – hundreds of billions of dollars – and shows up on every street corner,” said Ed Davis, former police commissioner of the City of Boston and a member of AGA’s Illegal Gambling Advisory Board. “We need to look at the utility of a regulated, transparent sports betting market. Let’s face it, demand is only rising. Consumers would rather do this in a regulated market that provides consumer protections, integrity of the game, and I would rather have certainty and transparency. It’s easier to maintain public safety in that type of environment.”
Attendees included the following organizations: Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI); Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA); International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP); Interpol D.C.; Major Cities Chiefs Association; Major County Sheriffs’ Association; National Black Prosecutors Association; National District Attorneys Association; National Organization for Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE); National Sheriffs’ Association; The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP); U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE);Women in Federal Law Enforcement (WIFLE); the Louisiana State Police; and the National Association of Attorneys General Gaming Committee. Several gaming practitioners and regulators also attended.
The Summit, led by members of AGA’s Illegal Gambling Advisory Board, included a demonstration from Genius Sports Group, which showcased its ability to use cutting-edge technology to monitor integrity of games. Karl Bennison, chief of the Enforcement Division at the Nevada Gaming Control Board, and other gaming industry leaders presented on the successes of legalized, regulated sports betting in Nevada.
The Summit is part of AGA’s “Stop Illegal Gambling – Play it Safe” initiative, which is uniting gaming and law enforcement to expose the growing illegal gambling market that preys on consumers, siphons tax revenues and funds violent crime. The initiative has made significant progress over the last 12 months. More information can be found at StopIllegalGambling.org.
About AGA: The American Gaming Association is the premier national trade group representing the $240 billion U.S. casino industry, which supports 1.7 million jobs in 40 states. AGA members include commercial and tribal casino operators, suppliers and other entities affiliated with the gaming industry. It is the mission of the AGA to be the single most effective champion of the industry, relentlessly protecting against harmful and often misinformed public policies, and paving a path for growth, innovation and reinvestment.