NETELLER plans return of US Customer’s Funds

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A Press release today on NETeller website reads;

The NETELLER Plc Group (LSE: NLR), the leading global independent online money transfer business, today announced that it has signed agreements with each of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York (“USAO”) and Navigant Consulting, Inc. (“Navigant”).

On 8 February 2007, the Group announced that it was in discussions with the USAO to manage an orderly return of funds to US customers and that it was contemplated that a forensic accounting firm would be engaged, at the Group’s expense, to assist in this process and to examine the Group’s financial position.

The Group is pleased to announce that on 20 March 2007, it signed agreements with the togel  and Navigant which, among other things, outline terms and a timeline under which NETELLER will work toward the orderly distribution of funds to its US customers. Per the agreements, the Group anticipates that within the next 75 days it will announce a plan by which the funds will be distributed to US customers. Navigant will also provide a report to the USAO on the Group’s current financial condition.

 

“We continue to be committed to returning funds to our US customers and working with the US Attorney’s Office,” said Ron Martin, Group President and CEO. “Progress, while not always visible to the outside observer, has been steady and these agreements mark a milestone in the process.”

 

NETELLER is continuing to cooperate with the USAO’s investigation, under the advice of its legal advisers and in accordance with court orders in the Isle of Man.

 

Further updates with relation to the US situation will be made as soon as there are any material developments. In the meantime, US customers should visit updates.neteller.com for more information, including newly updated FAQs that provide additional clarity, where the Group is able, around certain issues currently being raised in a number of public forums. Additionally US Customers can contact NETELLER Customer Service on the web or by phone at 1-888-258-5859.

 

Louisiana drops warrant on former Sportingbet chairman

 

Emerging on many reliable news sources, is the news that the State of Louisiana, which led the crackdown on internet gambling last year, has unexpectedly backed down, dropping all warrants against former Sportingbet chairman Peter Dicks and ‘all related warrants’.

 

Shares in all online gambling companies jumped on the news, raising hopes that the prohibitionist zeal of America was waning. Warrants against up to 58 other online gambling executives are believed to still be live, but various US sources say they are close to being dropped.

 

“If they really are all dropped, this is good news,” said Clive Hawkswood, the head of the trade body Remote Gaming Association.

 

Sportingbet issued a short statement to the Stock Exchange, saying: “Sportingbet is pleased to report that it has reached an amicable resolution with the St Landry District Attorney in the State of Louisiana. All related warrants issued by the Louisiana State Police have been cancelled with immediate effect. Both Sportingbet and the St Landry District Attorney now consider the matter closed.”

 

A spokesman for the company could not say if any money had been paid to the state to resolve the issue. “We are bound by confidentiality agreements with the Louisiana State police,” he said. US lawyers said a payment was usual in these circumstances.

 

He did confirm, however, that as well as Mr. Dicks being cleared, other Sportingbet executives, including chief executive Andrew McIver, were in the clear. “Whether he’ll get on a plane to the States is another matter,” he said.

 

Louisiana was the most zealous of all the US authorities chasing gambling companies. It scored a notable victory when it arrested Mr. Dicks in New York, but was frustrated in its attempts to extradite him from there. Mr. Dicks was allowed to fly home to the UK.

 

A few hours later the US Senate outlawed online gaming, taking the industry by surprise and wiping billions off the share prices of PartyGaming, 888, Sportingbet and other UK companies.

Yesterday, Neteller, which offered payment systems for online gambling companies, said it had reached agreement with the Southern District of New York to hand back money that had been frozen in its customers’ accounts. Within 75 days it will transfer $55m (£28m). It said this was not part of a plea bargain over the arrest of two founders of the company.

 

 

 

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