The Alberta Court of Appeal has ruled that PlayAlberta online gambling site was established according to Canadian law. Local tribal operators like the Tsuut’ina and Stoney Nakoda First Nations were unhappy when the gambling site started operations in October 2020 and sued for its closure in April 2021.
One of the cases raised by the local tribal operators was that the Alberta Gaming & Liquor Commission (AGLC) had no legal right to become the operator of PlayAlberta. According to the tribes, the jurisdiction of the AGLC includes overseeing the gaming, cannabis, and liquor industries. They also argued that the operator has no business with the iGaming sector.
Some gaming regulators under the Canadian jurisdiction also serve as gaming operators. The local tribes argued this was illegal under Canadian federal law, especially in Alberta’s case. Other critics also say this system will bring about a clash of interests.
In their lawsuit, they said the AGLC must either be operating the casino without a license or issuing a gambling license to itself, violating its own Act.
Verdict on the Lawsuit Filed by the Tribes
The Calgary Herald reported that the lower court dismissed the case in February while the appellate panel recently upheld that decision.
While it’s true that Canada’s Criminal Code bans games of chance and lotteries, the panel agreed that there could be an exception for provincial governments interested in managing authorized lottery programs.
The judges also wrote that other agencies would require provincial licensing and approval before operating an authorized lottery program, while the provincial government may not need that.
As a double blow, the casinos belonging to the tribes were closed while they filed their lawsuit. This was done to control the pandemic, making PlayAlberta the only casino operator in the province.
Games Available on PlayAlberta
PlayAlberta offers online slots including titles like Big Piggy Bonus, Bok of the Sphinx, and Cash Eruption. You’ll also find instant-win lottery games, and table games. Canadian players who enjoy Live Dealer titles will find Live Blackjack, Live Roulette, Live Poker and a dedicated Game show lobby.
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