Antigua’s Online Gaming Licensing Head Suspended

Gambling News - June 21, 2009 - Written by Renee

Antigua and Barbuda was the world’s first online gambling licensing jurisdiction and remains one of the most reputed jurisdictions today. Recently it made the much sought after White List of the United Kingdom regulators. The Directorate of Offshore Gaming in Antigua operates under the Financial Services Regulatory Commission. Leroy King, the head of the commission, has been suspended due to his links to shady financier Allen Stanford and his collapsed pyramid scheme.  

Antigua had been locked in a bitter battle with the United States over the imposition of the UIGEA and its disastrous effect on the online gaming operators from Antigua. Antigua had won litigation in the WTO, which America was refusing to honor. It was in this background that accusations against King by the United States first surfaced. King was accused of accepting bribes of thousands of dollars to ignore irregularities in Stanford’s Antigua based banking operations. The accusations specifically stated that King ran dummy audits of Stanford’s bank so that the irregularities did not come to light.  

This news has jeopardized the reputation of Antigua as a licensing authority for online gambling. Attorney General Justin Simon of Antigua acknowledged this and said, “Antigua and Barbuda’s offshore business activities once again placed under intense international scrutiny, and this will clearly have adverse effects on the economy and raise questions about our regulatory legal framework.” Simon said that an intensive internal investigation had been conducted into King’s activities and the failures in the system. The Cabinet of Antigua would decide the action that would be taken against King.

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