Court Dismisses iMEGA's Challenge to UIGEA

10 March 2008

A U.S. District Court has dismissed the Interactive Media Entertainment & Gaming Association (iMEGA)'s challenge to the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA).

Although the case has been dismissed on its merits, iMEGA says it views the Court's decision as a victory in some ways because the Court ruled that iMEGA has sufficient standing to challenge the law.

"If a judge was just going to dismiss something on the merits why would she spend any time at all establishing an association's standing?" said iMEGA chairman Joe Brennan Jr. "This judge knows that this is going to be appealed, and in a way she has kind-of created the breadcrumb trail for us to appeal through her decision."

iMEGA's purpose is to defend "digital civil rights," and Brennan says the UIGEA is the most serious challenge to the notion of the right to privacy because it criminalizes activity that is legal offline.

In June iMEGA filed for a preliminary injunction against the DOJ, the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Reserve to prevent enforcement of the UIGEA, claiming it infringes on Americans' First Amendment rights. The defendants filed a motion to dismiss in August, arguing that iMEGA's case lacks substance and that the organization has no legal standing to challenge the law.