Federal Judge Rules Against Sports Betting Agreement with Seminole Tribe

Sports Book Betting

Late Monday, U.S District Judge Dabney Friedrich ruled the deal allows online sports betting through the Seminole Tribe violates the federal law that regulates gambling on tribal lands.

Governor DeSantis and the Seminole Tribe of Florida celebrated the approval of the historic Seminole Gaming Compact in August after a 45-day review of the agreement was completed by the U.S. Department of Interior. The agreement included online sports betting that took place off of tribal lands but was processed on tribal property.

“The final approval of this historic gaming compact is a big deal for the State of Florida,” said Governor DeSantis in the release. “This mutually-beneficial agreement will grow our economy, expand tourism and recreation and provide billions in new revenue to benefit Floridians. I again want to thank Seminole Tribe of Florida Chairman Marcellus Osceola Jr., Senate President Wilton Simpson and House Speaker Chris Sprowls for their part in getting this done for our great state.”

However, Friedrich ruled that the deal violates the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, or IGRA. The IGRA requires gambling activity take place on tribal lands. Friedrich wrote that, “over a dozen provisions in IGRA regulate gaming on ‘Indian lands,’ and none regulate gaming in another location.”

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Seminole Tribe Kicks off Sports Betting in Florida

The Seminole Tribe of Florida kicked off their recently approved online sports betting platform in Florida even during legal challenges. The Tribe rolled out the new entertainment option with little press.

The launch of the new platform, which operates through an app downloadable for smart devices, allows users to place bets and wagers on professional sports teams.

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Seminole Gaming Compact Facing Legal Challenges

The newly minted gaming compact between the State of Florida and the Seminole Tribe of Florida is already facing a lawsuit challenging its constitutionality.

The lawsuit says the Seminole Tribe’s claim to being the sports-betting hub, which is still illegal in Florida, creates complications due to gamblers being able to place bets on Seminole servers but while not being on tribal land.

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