There have been rising tensions among governments and daily fantasy sports leagues DraftKings and FanDuel over the last few months. There have been questions of whether the two companies are illegal gambling as they had been called “games of skill” before now.
According to ESPN, New York officials have called for an immediate cease and desist of both operations within the state after it was declared that DFS leagues are actually illegal gambling. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said in a letter on Tuesday that the leagues have been declared illegal.
“Our review concludes that DraftKings’/FanDuel’s operations constitute illegal gambling under New York law,” Schneiderman wrote in the letter obtained by ESPN’s David Purdum and Darren Rovell and ABC News.
Currently, both leagues have greatly benefited from having the state of New York using their services. More than ten percent of both of their revenue come from the state.
Both companies released statements on Tuesday following the declaration.
“Fantasy sports is a game of skill and legal under New York State law,” FanDuel said in a statement. “This is a politician telling hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers they are not allowed to play a game they love and share with friends, family, coworkers and players across the country. The game has been played — legally — in New York for years and years, but after the Attorney General realized he could now get himself some press coverage, he decided a game that has been around for a long, long time is suddenly now not legal. We have operated openly and lawfully in New York for several years. The only thing that changed today is the Attorney General’s mind.”
“We are very disappointed that New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman took such hasty action today, particularly since he did not take any time to understand our business or why daily fantasy sports are clearly a game of skill,” DraftKings said in a statement. “We strongly disagree with the reasoning in his opinion and will examine and vigorously pursue all legal options available to ensure our over half a million customers in New York State can continue to play the fantasy sports games they love.”
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