Interactive Media Entertainment & Gaming Association, Inc. v. Honorable Thomas Wingate and Commonwealth of Kentucky et al.,

Petition For Original Proceeding Pursuant To CR 76.36

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EFF, (CDT), and the (ACLU) urged a Kentucky Court of Appeals in November of 2008 to vacate a lower court's order authorizing the seizure of more than 100 Internet domain names associated with websites operating around the globe...

...In a move to combat what it viewed as illegal online gambling, the Commonwealth of Kentucky convinced a state court to "seize" 141 domain names because the names allegedly constituted "gambling devices" that are banned under Kentucky law -- even though the sites were owned and operated by individuals outside of the state, and in many cases even outside of the country. Unless the sites screened out Kentucky users, the court held, the seizure order was proper.

In its amicus brief filed with the Court of Appeals in support of a writ vacating the judge's order, EFF, CDT, and the ACLU argue that the First Amendment, the Commerce Clause, and the Due Process Clause of the Constitution prohibit state courts from interfering with Internet domain names that were registered and maintained outside the state.

On January 20, 2009, the Kentucky Court of Appeals granted the consolidated petitions for writs of mandamus, overturning the trial court's order seizure order...

...On January 21, 2009, the Commonwealth of Kentucky filed a notice of appeal to the Kentucky Supreme Court. On April 2, 2009, the Commonwealth filed its appellant brief with the Kentucky Supreme Court.

Update: On March 18, 2010, the Kentucky Supreme Court reversed the Court of Appeals' order granting the consolidated petitions for writs of mandamus, holding that the (iMEGA) and the (IGC) lacked standing to challenge the circuit court's seizure order....

On March 26, 2010, following a renewed writ filing by the registrant of a domain name implicated by the trial court's seizure order (truepoker.com), the Kentucky Court of Appeals issued an on order recommending transfer of the writ petition to the Kentucky Supreme Court for a ruling on the merits.

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Published In: Civil Procedure Updates, Civil Remedies Updates, Constitutional Law Updates, Science, Computers & Technology Updates

Reference Info:State, 6th Circuit, Kentucky | United States