The USA has a long history of illegal gambling in sports. Gambling scandals and political control have ended in the prohibition and regulation of sports gambling in the USA. Laws that connected with sports gambling along with other standards have been changing and these changes have been named “Waves”. The earliest of these waves was during the Colonial Period that lasted up until the 1800s. The second wave took place following the US Civil war up until the early Twentieth century. The third of these waves started in the Great Depression till date.
Sports gambling has always been illegal in the US. Puritan attitudes while in the Colonial era were adopted towards sports and also other gambling, possession of cards, gaming tables, dice etc. Later on it was only allowed if it was not a trade but only innocent recreation. Early settlers had the view that gambling was just a harmless hobby. Gambling was likened to the frontier spirit as both of them involved opportunism, risk taking and high expectations.
Illegal sports gambling has become associated with mobsters and organized crime in the United States. Illegal sports gambling became a huge business for gang mobsters while in the 1920s and 1930s. Organized bookmaking systems were set up by organized crime throughout the nation. Horse racing betting shot to popularity in those times.
In 1931 Nevada legalized casino gambling and here too organized crime took control over all of the casino betting business. Mobsters controlled illegal nationwide wire services Trans America Wire and Continental Wire Service. Mobsters like the infamous Al Capone put in place their own wire services to stop gamblers from taking any benefit from delays by making sure they posted winning wagers before official results were out.
The Federal Government of the usa cracked upon mobsters and organized crime over the 1950s and forced them out of the Nevada Casino gambling industry. But this would not dissuade the organized crime mobsters who took over illegal bookmaking. Law Enforcement authorities do acknowledge that independent bookies are operating in the nation but it is evident that organized crime still controls all the big bucks in betting.
Animal fights also have a long history the United States despite the bad reputation it’s got. Most animal fights involve dog fights and cock fights which are today popular with street gangs and large amounts of weapons and cash are usually present in the course of these fights.
History of illegal gambling in sports reveals that cockfighting was illegal and banned by nearly all states the United States over the 1800s. It is still illegal today in 48 states. The law in Minnesota makes any king of gambling bet Illegal. Thus any type of card game where one has to pay to participate in a game and have possibilities to win money is a “bet” and thus also considered to be illegal gambling. It is important to keep in mind that the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 only deals with the funding of internet gambling not the actual act of betting.