Fugitives of Justice?

Yahoo Internet Life! makes their 5 page look into offshore bookmaking available online.

Alas, the article featured in this month’s (November) Yahoo! Internet Life magazine on sports betting is now available online. The author, journalist Justin Ware, does an excellent job profiling the plight of offshore bookmakers and their legal turmoil. However, many questions linger. The five page piece gives us a glimpse into the lives of offshore bookmakers, but refuses to answer, address or even speculate about many of the more relevant issues. Its a page turning, can’t put it down, real life look into the dramatics of a world many only dream about. I secretly found myself not wanting it to end, and wishing we knew how all of this is going to turn out.


Of these 22, Nine of them have pleaded guilty, cases against four are pending and seven of those charged remain fugitive. The cases were dismissede. When the U.S. Attorney’s office in Manhattan originally filed the charges, Cohen’s attorney, Benjamin Brafman was quoted as saying he expects all the cases to be “vigorously defended.” Almost two years later, Cohen finds himself alone in his decision to fight the charges. At least 3 of the “fugitives” live in Antigua, unable to return to the US without being arrested.

The Yahoo! Internet Life article breaks new though. Ware travels to Antigua and interviews constituents of wwts – two of the sports books involved with the Federal charges. The reader is given a first hand look into the life of those offshore. Somehow though, one still feels very much on the outside. These sports book “employees” are not forthcoming with information, and their skeptical, cautious demeanor leaves you wanting to know more about their respective situations.

Here are some notes about the article:

What I didn’t know:

  • No one offshore seems to really care if the Kyl Bill is passed.

What I wonder:

  • If its passed, will most just move their citizenship to the island where they are doing business?


What I didn’t know:

  • The biggest fear of NON-American owned Sports Books is that the US Government will LEGALIZE sports betting. All that money will stop flowing offshore back into the hands of US Citizen owned sports books. American capitalists aren’t the only ones wanting a piece of all this free money our kind Uncle Sam seems to have no use for.


What I wonder:

  • What sort of economic impact would this have on the islands? IT IS A WELL KNOWN FACT that the biggest reason the US doesn’t throw everything they have at stopping the influx of cocaine from Mexico is that if successful, it would cripple the Mexico economy, and subsequently ours. How much longer until the offshore situation is the same?

    Just like the Caribbean Islands, Mexico was NOT a financial liability before the American dollars came pouring in – but once their economy gets acclimated to the influx of new dollars, taking away the income can have catastrophic economic effects for the US. Will that happen here?

What I didn’t know:

  • Over 1 Billion was wagered in Antigua along last year.

What I wonder:

  • Says who? One thing is for sure, there is a whole pile of money at stake here.


What I didn’t know:

  • Many non-legal experts seem to agree that Cohen’s case is important and will be precedent setting

What I wonder:

  • What is the real importance of the case? Does it really matter? Will Cohen just flee to the islands if convicted (wouldn’t you? I would)? Is there really a point to all of this?
  • If there is a spoken agreement between the few remaining “fugitives”? Perhaps they pay for the legal aide if he goes back to stand trial. In the interview, Cohen’s partner says:”…He’s going to stand up in court and look like a Cub Scout. Here’s a guy who went to Cal Berkley, graduated with a degree in nuclear engineering, became a successful options trader, and doesn’t have a blemish on his record. If anyone was going to fight the battle, Jay was the best guy for it.”

I’m not really sure if Cohen is on a campaign for sainthood, but one thing is very certain: The US Attorney’s department has a feisty opponent. Cohen’s sports book software was revolutionary; not only was it one of the earliest, but it also duplicates a futures market trading environment for the sports speculator. Their exclusive software is still regarded as the fastest, easiest to use and most reliable – much better than the other “canned” sports book environments on the Internet.

Obviously, we are hoping for a Cohen victory next year. We also hope when this all said and done that we’ll get more details of the on going governmental assault on offshore wagering.
thedailyspread.com | November 22nd, 1999

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