CHRB Cracks Down on California Players Pools

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (June 27, 2014) – An investigation by the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) has determined that two state-licensed Advance Deposit Wagering (ADW) providers are currently offering or allowing players pools in violation of California law. Accordingly, the CHRB sent cease and desist orders Thursday to those and all Advance Deposit Wagering (ADW) companies licensed in California notifying them that players pools are prohibited by state law.

CHRB Executive Director Rick Baedeker also sent the letter to representatives of all California racetracks and those organizations providing wagering services to simulcast facilities.

Players pool wagering on races run outside of California in which California residents do not participate is not affected by this order.

Players pools occur when individuals forward monies to a third party for the purpose of pooling those funds in the placement of a wager on a horse race. The individual who provides the monies for the pool is not the person making the wagering selection. Rather, the third party amasses the monies and places the wager.

According to California Penal Code Section 337a, players pools are illegal as a form of bookmaking. As such, no wagering facility licensed in California should knowingly accept a pool wager.

ADW companies licensed in California are prohibited from engaging in players pools. ADW companies are licensed to accept wagering instructions only from their account subscribers. ADW accounts are for personal use only and the account subscribers are responsible to maintain the secrecy of the account number and the means of personal identification.

The order specifically names “the pool proposal offered by ‘Keeneland Dan’ through ADW operator Xpressbet” as a form of wagering in which California residents cannot participate. “Nor can ADW provider Twinspires offer a version of a players pool where Twinspires makes the wager selections for the pool. Nor can any ADW company licensed in California offer like wagers.”