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iMEGA rejoins Kentucky domains hijacking battle

Attorneys representing the Interactive Media Entertainment and Gaming Association (iMEGA) re-filed a motion Monday to intervene in the Franklin Circuit Court in Kentucky to prevent the state from seizing the rights to 141 Internet domain names, all of which are related to Internet gambling. This included both sites that did and did not service US players.

The lawyers, in their filings, stated, "iMEGA has surmounted the legal hurdle (set by the Supreme Court of Kentucky)" to permit it to intercede on the basis of associational standing, due to the fact that one of its member organisations - Yatahay Limited, rightsholder to the domain "truepoker.com" - had provided proof of its membership in the association, and its reliance on the association's actions to prevent further damages to their holdings."

The Court needs to consider the jurisdictional and constitutional questions the seizure actions raised, iMEGA's lawyers said, because the entire action taken by Kentucky and the lower court "has no basis in the Kentucky statutes."

IMEGA returns to a court where two years ago, Judge Thomas D. Wingate, after a secret hearing with attorneys representing Kentucky's Secretary of Public Safety, issued orders to have the rights to each domain frozen by their registrar, pending seizure by the Commonwealth.

iMEGA claims that this was done with the objective of forcing sites that used the domains to pay financial settlements in order to reacquire the rights of use.

iMEGA successfully blocked those efforts after the Kentucky Court of Appeals issued a writ prohibiting the lower court from proceeding with the seizures.

The Kentucky Supreme Court then ordered the whole matter back to the trial court, so that there could be a finding of fact regarding iMEGA's standing to represent the 141 domain names.

In this week's filings, iMEGA's lawyers claimed that, in the interest of judicial economy, and because the procedure Kentucky's attorneys requested has no basis in the law, the court should deny the Commonwealth's motion for a "case management order", which iMEGA's attorneys demonstrate is in fact a "motion for a forfeiture hearing by another name."

Source: InfoPowa News

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