John Campos, who was the Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of a Utah bank that processed financial transactions for online poker players, is charged with conspiracy to violate and violations of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (“UIGEA”), 31 U.S.C. § 5363, violations of the Illegal Gambling Businesses Act (“IGBA”), 18 U.S.C. § 1955, and money laundering based on violations of IGBA, 18 U.S.C. § 1956(h). All of these charges must be dismissed. The UIGEA charges must be dismissed because they ignore the clear exemption from prosecution set forth in UIGEA for financial transaction providers such as Mr. Campos. Additionally, the UIGEA counts must be dismissed because they fail to allege any person who as a matter of law can constitute the person “engaged in the business of betting or wagering” required by the statute. The IGBA charges (and the money laundering charges based on them) must also be dismissed because two basic elements of the statute are not sufficiently alleged in the Indictment: that the companies in question were “gambling businesses” and that the businesses were “conducted” in a State or political subdivision of the United States. Further, both the UIGEA and IGBA charges must be dismissed as constitutionally vague as applied to Mr. Campos. Moreover, criminal prosecution of the conduct alleged here would violate the rule of lenity.
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