The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) has warned six online poker affiliate websites to cease and desist from promoting online gaming sites that are not licensed and regulated by the state of New Jersey.A letter obtained by onlinepokerreport.com
(OPR) to Raketherake.com, a large online poker affiliate, states that the site, "by offering links to sites which may be offering unauthorized online gaming, may be promoting activity that is contrary to New Jersey and federal law."
The letter goes on request that the site remove any links to online gaming sites that "are not authorized under federal law or under the law of any State."
Sites that received the letter, according to OPR, include Raketherake.com, CardsChat.com, PokerSource.com, RakeBrain.com, Pokersites.com and one unnamed site. The online poker sites that fall in the crosshairs of the DGE are Bovada Poker
, Merge Gaming, Black Chip Poker
and Americas Cardroom
"We believe this may either taint legitimate sites by associating them with the illegal ones, and conversely may lend the appearance that these illegal sites are affiliated with authorized sites," DGE spokeswoman Kerry Langan said in a statement. "We believe it is unfair to those companies that subjected themselves to our strict licensing and regulatory requirements to have to compete with these illegal sites and entities which are being paid to promote them."
The DGE letter, dated April 17, 2014, preceded a May 14 announcement by the Winning Poker Network — a network that includes Black Chip Poker and Americas Cardroom — that it would stop accepting players
from the three states (New Jersey, Delaware and Nevada) that license and regulate online gambling, though multiple high-volume players from those states have reported that they were told they could simply change their state of residence
in order to continue to play on the sites.
As of 4 p.m. on May 20, RaketheRake.com and PokerSource.com are continuing to promote brands that have a New Jersey license alongside brands that do not. CardsChat.com and Pokersites.com offer links to sites that are not licensed in New Jersey but do not link to sites that have New Jersey licenses, while RakeBrain.com offers a link to Party Poker
, but does not include an American flag icon next to the online room to indicate it accepts U.S. players.