Federal judge invalidates Florida sports betting deal with Seminole Tribe

A federal judge invalidated the Seminole Tribe of Florida’s $2.5 billion gaming compact with the state of Florida, which allowed sports betting statewide.

In the Nov. 22 ruling, U.S. District Judge Dabney L. Friedrich in Washington, D.C., granted a motion for summary judgment that the gaming compact should be vacated because it violates federal Indian gaming law. That means the Hollywood-based Seminole Tribe of Florida will not be allowed to offer online sports betting in the state; operate craps and roulette within its casinos; and build three more casinos, including one in Hollywood. The tribe’s Seminole Hard Rock Casino in Hollywood is the largest casino in South Florida.

“The Seminole Tribe is reviewing the judge’s opinion and carefully considering its next steps,” a tribe spokesperson said.

The Seminole Tribe launched online sports betting in early November, but has yet to start operating craps and roulette at its casinos.

The Monday ruling was made in a lawsuit filed in August against the U.S. Department of the Interior, which approved the gaming compact between the Seminole Tribe and the state earlier that month. Attorney Rebecca M. Ross , who represented the federal government in the lawsuit, couldn’t be reached for comment.

The complaint was filed mostly by parties from South Florida, including the owner of Magic City Casino in Miami, Coral Gables developers Armando Codina and James Carr , Miami-based auto dealer Norman Braman and nonprofit No Casinos. Magic City Casino argued that it would be harmed because it would lose gambling customers due to the […]

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