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South Africa Bans Online Poker

by Scott Carlson, Rakeback.com Staff Writer

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A North Gauteng High Court ruling handed down on August 20th makes online poker and online casinos illegal in South Africa. The Gauteng Gambling board has had an ongoing battle with the online gambling operators and was seeking a ruling from the court. The law makes it illegal for online casinos and poker rooms to offer games, players to take part in online gaming, and financial institutions to process payments. It also tasks internet service providers to block access to the sites. It is clear that the online sites are subject to fines and imprisonment but the law is vague as to what punishments players could receive.

The ruling states that unlicensed poker rooms and casinos are subject to the law. This leaves the opening that the South African government could allow licensed sites to operate in the future, similar to what France has done.

What isn't known at this time is if the ruling will have any direct or indirect impact on the World Series of Poker Circuit Event scheduled for the Emerald Casino in Gauteng, South Africa October 25th - 31st.

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