DOJ Supplemental Memorandum relating to the Wire Act



Supplemental Memorandum

The 12-page supplemental memo was filed by the defendants on April 25 by Deputy Assistant AG Hashim Mooppan, Assistant AG Counsel Matthew Glover, Federal Programs Branch Assistant Director John Tyler, and Federal Programs Branch Trial Attorney Steven Myers.

Essentially, the memo reminded the court that the DOJ is still reviewing “whether the Wire Act applies to State lotteries and their vendors” but assured that it would not prosecute any state lotteries or vendors while the review is underway. Plaintiffs, they said, have not pointed to one example of the DOJ prosecuting a state lottery, its employees or vendors under the Wire Act.

To the DOJ, that means the court lacks jurisdiction to resolve the Wire Act’s scope at this time, as there is “no present credible threat of prosecution.”

And with that, the DOJ requested the case be dismissed for lack of standing.

The totality of the argument was stated as:

“The Wire Act applies to ‘(w)hoever being engaged in the business of betting or wagering knowingly uses a wire communication facility’ for certain prohibited purposes. Under the Dictionary Act, ‘unless the context indicates otherwise,’ the terms ‘person’ and ‘whoever’ are defined to ‘include corporations, companies, associations, firms, partnerships, societies, and joint stock companies, as well as individuals.’ The Lottery Commission’s arguments fail to demonstrate that it, its employees, or its vendors fall outside this term in this context.”

More articles on the topic from various sources

DOJ Continues Fight Against New Hampshire Wire Act Assertions 27, 2019
When last US District Court Judge Paul Barbadoro spoke regarding the Wire Act, the oral arguments phase of the proceedings had concluded.