Appeals court sends online gambling case against Apple, Meta and Google back to U.S. District Court

May 22, 2024 2:20 PM
Photo: Shutterstock
  • Mia Doyle, Special to CDC Gaming Reports
May 22, 2024 2:20 PM
  • Mia Doyle, Special to CDC Gaming Reports
  • United States

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has allowed lawsuits against tech giants Apple, Meta and Google to proceed, Media Daily News has reported.

Story continues below

The lawsuits, dating to 2000, accuse the companies of promoting illegal gambling through gaming apps and profiting from the sale of virtual currency. In April, the lawsuits were sent to the appellate court to determine whether the companies would have immunity.

However, the Ninth Circuit panel has returned the case to U.S. District Court Judge Edward Davila in California for additional review under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which protects the companies from liability for third-party content on their platforms.

Davila previously ruled that while Section 230 shields the companies from some claims, it may not apply to allegations that the platforms profited from processing in-game payments. The appellate court found that the ruling was too abstract, addressing legal theories rather than specific claims, and decided that the case should return to the U.S. District Court for a more detailed analysis.

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals is the largest of the 13 appellate courts in the U.S. federal court system and is responsible for hearing appeals from federal trials courts in nine Western states and two Pacific Island jurisdictions.