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US States Target Bovada in Illegal Gambling Crackdown



US States Take Action Against Illegal Gambling Operators: Michigan and Connecticut Target Bovada

The fight against illegal gambling in the US has intensified as state regulators from Michigan and Connecticut take decisive actions against the notorious black-market operator, Bovada.

With the aim of protecting legal gambling markets and consumer interests, these states are stepping up their efforts to eradicate unlicensed operations that bypass US regulations.

Learn how Michigan and Connecticut’s latest measures could reshape the landscape of sports betting and gambling, ensuring a safer and more regulated environment for all stakeholders.

Stay informed about the evolving regulatory landscape and its implications for legal and illegal gambling operators. Follow expert insights and updates on this significant crackdown.


US States Take Action Against Illegal Gambling Operators: Michigan and Connecticut Target Bovada

United States.- Bovada, one of the leading black-market sports betting operators in the US, is facing increased pressure from state regulators in Michigan and Connecticut. Despite already being banned in five states, these regulators are now determined to keep the platform out of their markets to protect legal gambling operations and consumers.

Michigan Leads the Charge

Since the US Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in 2018, a key goal for legal US stakeholders has been to stamp out the black market. The Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) has taken a significant step in this direction by issuing a cease-and-desist order to Bovada.

On May 29, the MGCB gave Curaçao-based Bovada 14 days to cease operations in Michigan. The regulator stated that Bovada violated several state laws, including the Lawful Internet Gaming Act, the Michigan Gaming Control and Revenue Act, and multiple sections of the Michigan penal code. Should Bovada continue to operate, the MGCB is prepared to take legal action against the company.

Brandt Iden, head of government affairs for Fanatics Sportsbook and former Michigan representative, expressed strong support for the MGCB’s actions on the World Series of Politics podcast. He emphasized the importance of removing illegal operators to ensure the success of the regulated market. “The regulated market can’t thrive if the illegal market is still there, and Michigan has taken the first step,” Iden said, encouraging other regulators to follow suit.


Connecticut Follows Suit

Connecticut regulators are also preparing to take action against Bovada. The sports betting division of the Department of Consumer Protection (DCP) has stated that it sends cease-and-desist letters whenever it becomes aware of illegal gaming operators. The agency plans to send a letter to Bovada, joining states like Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Maryland, and Nevada in banning the platform.

Brendan Bussmann of B Global emphasized the need for a coordinated effort, possibly involving the federal government, to effectively combat illegal gambling operations. He noted the importance of ensuring that there are sufficient laws to prosecute and protect citizens from such activities.

The Role of Legal Operators

Legal operators also have a crucial role in squeezing out the illegal market. Bussmann highlighted the importance of collaboration between legal operators and regulators to maintain a clean market. The MGCB has taken steps to ensure that licensed suppliers and vendors are not doing business with illegal operators. Earlier this month, the regulator required internet game content providers to fill out an ‘Illegal Gaming Attestation’ form to confirm their compliance with state laws.

Federal Involvement

While state actions are essential, there is a growing recognition that the federal government could play a more effective role in combating illegal gambling. Given that black-market operators can operate across multiple states without paying taxes or offering consumer protections, a federal crackdown could be more efficient.


In April 2023, seven state regulators, including the MGCB, wrote to the Department of Justice (DoJ), urging it to prioritize investigations into illegal gambling operators. The DoJ responded positively, stating its commitment to addressing the issue.

High-Profile Legal Actions

The federal government has been active in pursuing illegal gambling operators. Notably, the Wayne Nix illegal gambling ring investigation has led to several high-profile prosecutions, including the sentencing of a casino executive and a key bettor’s agreement to plead guilty. These actions demonstrate the federal government’s ability to tackle significant illegal gambling operations.


The actions taken by Michigan and Connecticut against Bovada mark an important step in the fight against illegal gambling in the US. By targeting high-profile operators and ensuring compliance with state and federal laws, regulators aim to protect consumers and support the legal gambling market. The collaboration between state and federal authorities, along with the involvement of legal operators, is crucial in this ongoing battle.

As the regulatory landscape continues to evolve, stakeholders must remain vigilant and proactive in their efforts to combat illegal gambling. Stay informed about the latest developments and their implications for the gambling industry.


Jerome, a valuable addition to the Gamingo.News team, brings with him extensive journalistic experience in the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry was sparked during his college years when he participated in local poker tournaments, eventually leading to his exposure to the burgeoning world of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now utilizes his accumulated knowledge to fuel his passion for journalism, providing the team with the latest online scoops.

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