Justice Dept. seeks reversal on ruling OK'ing gambling ads

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The U.S. Department of Justice is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse an appellate court decision overturning federal bans on gambling ads on TV and radio, arguing that the lower court didn't get proper evidence.

Instead of challenging the legal reasoning used by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that the mixture of laws--allowing state lotteries and Indian casinos to advertise while barring ads for other--fails to halt gambling and is legally flawed, the Justice Department contended that recent Supreme Court decisions spell out that the court's decision needs to be made on specific evidence.

Because the original Las Vegas decision in the Valley Broadcasting case came down before recent Supreme Court decisions spelled out the need to get evidence, that evidence was never presented and the case was argued on now-overturned legal principles, the Justice Department said.

Since the appellate court acted early this year, gambling ads have been legal on TV and radio in most Western states. Last week, a U.S. District judge in New Jersey ruled that federal gambling ad rules are unconstitutional.

Copyright December 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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