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H.R. 2366 (112th): Internet Gambling Prohibition, Poker Consumer Protection, and Strengthening UIGEA Act of 2011

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Jun 24, 2011.

Internet Gambling Prohibition, Poker Consumer Protection, and Strengthening UIGEA Act of 2011 - Prohibits a person from (and requires a fine under the federal criminal code, imprisonment up to five years, or both) for operating an Internet gambling facility without a license in good standing issued by a state or tribal agency qualified by the Secretary of Commerce (Secretary). Makes such prohibition inapplicable to facilities operated by persons located outside the United States in which bets or wagers are made by individuals located outside the United States.

Establishes the Office of Internet Poker Oversight in the Department of Commerce.

Allows a licensee to accept an Internet poker bet or wager from U.S.-located individuals and offer related services so long as the license remains in good standing.

Prohibits licensees from knowingly accepting bets or wagers by persons residing where a state or Indian tribe has notified the Secretary of specific gambling limitations. Sets forth exceptions concerning the applicability of state limitations on tribal lands.

Establishes a 5-year term for initial licenses, subject to renewal and transfer requirements.

Authorizes enforcement and disciplinary actions by the Secretary and the appropriate state or tribal agency. Sets forth civil penalties.

Requires: (1) each qualified state and tribal agency to maintain a list and submit a current copy each week to the Secretary, who shall maintain a master list, of persons self-excluded from playing Internet poker through licensed Internet poker facilities; and (2) each licensee to implement a Compulsive Gaming, Responsible Gaming, and Self-Exclusion Program as a licensure condition.

Precludes persons prohibited from gaming with a licensee by law, or by order of the Secretary, a qualified state or tribal agency, or any court of competent jurisdiction, including any person on the self-exclusion list, from collecting winnings or recovering losses arising from prohibited gaming activity. Requires court-ordered child support delinquents to be included on the self-exclusion list.

Prohibits licensees, except as specified, from: (1) accepting bets or wagers on sporting events and games other than Internet poker, and (2) using credit cards for Internet gambling. Establishes a violation for operating a place of public accommodation for accessing Internet gambling facilities.

Requires a fine under the federal criminal code, or imprisonment up to three years, or both, for certain rules of play violations, including using tools, electronic devices, or software to obtain a prohibited or unfair advantage or to defraud any licensee or persons placing bets or wagers with a licensee.

Makes specified provisions of: (1) this Act and federal monetary transaction laws inapplicable to interstate off-track wagers under the Interstate Horseracing Act of 1978 (IHA), and (2) the federal criminal code and financial transaction laws inapplicable to this Act and the IHA.

Prohibits this Act from having any effect on: (1) state or tribal lottery rights, privileges, or obligations; or (2) non-Internet gaming activities within the scope of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act or any successor provisions, tribal-state compacts, or authorities.

Amends the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 to prohibit holding a financial transaction provider (FTP) liable for a financial activity or transaction, including a payments processing activity, in connection with a bet or wager permitted by this Act or the IHA without actual knowledge of any applicable federal or state law violation. Shields such providers from liability for blocking or refusing to honor specified transactions.

Requires the Director of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network to investigate unlicensed Internet gambling enterprises and provide the Secretary of the Treasury with a list of such enterprises updated at least every 60 days.

Deems FTPs to have actual knowledge that persons or entities are unlicensed Internet gambling enterprises if they are included on such list or, under other specified circumstances, when information in addition to a list is available to an FTP demonstrating that a person or entity is such an enterprise.