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Sportingbet agree US settlement - did they get off lightly?

The market seems to think that they got off lightly with a $33m settlement, they are up 12.86% already today.

Sportingbet agrees $33m US settlement

LONDON (MarketWatch) -- U.K. online gambling group Sportingbet (UK:SBT 77.75, +7.75, +11.07%) said Tuesday that it has entered a non-prosecution agreement with the Office of the United States Attorney of the Southern District of New York under which it will pay a total of $33 million. Sportingbet said that under the terms of the agreement, the Southern District of New York will not seek to prosecute the company for activities related to its Internet gambling business with customers in the U.S. from 1998 to 2006.

Considering the length of time the companies operated by Sportingbet were in that market, it seems like quite a light penalty in comparison with Party Gaming who agreed a $105m deal in 2009, although it could be argued that poker was booming at the time, and Sportingbet didn't own all of the companies breaking US law for the entire period of 1998-2006, they acquired them along the way.

Party Gaming stocks rose 20% immediately after their settlement announcement, and Sportingbet are well on the way to a similar result.

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