The US Navy is warning its sailors not to participate in March Madness bracket betting while at work.
JAG member Lt. Kathy Paradis wrote a blog, reminding sailors that they cannot be engaged in gambling activities while on duty or while aboard navy ships. The restriction also applies to office pools, which are the most popular way to bet on the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament. In those pools, players fill out a bracket of who they think will win the games through the various rounds, and whoever gets the most right wins the prize.
While nobody has ever been prosecuted for participating in a bracket contest, anybody who is found participating in bets can be tried under military law, with various penalties such as jail time, reduction in pay and rank, and other consequences being possible.
The NCAA Tournament began on March 15th and will run through April 4th, when the championship game takes place in Houston, Texas.