Robbie Hargett Nov. 30, 2015, 10:40am


NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) – A New York man is suing several banking, facilitating, payment processing, and online gambling companies over claims they illegally collect on debt.

Yehuda Guttman, individually and for all others similarly situated, filed a class action lawsuit Nov. 18 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against Visa, MasterCard, American Express Credit Corp., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Merrick Bank Corp., Capital One Bank, Paysafecard.com USA, Vantiv, FanDuel and DraftKings, alleging violations of New York General Obligation Law, unjust enrichment, fraud and misrepresentation, and negligence.

Guttman is one of thousands of people who have bet and lost money through FanDuel's and DraftKing's allegedly illegal sports gambling sites, the complaint states.

The suit states the banking defendants lent money or credit to Guttman for wagers he placed on the gambling sites. The facilitators (Visa, MasterCard, and American Express) received a fee from the banks for facilitating the money transfer, and the payment processors (Paysafecard.com and Vantiv) serve a "player banking function," receiving a fee as the financial intermediary between the gambling sites and their customers, according to the suit.

The banks have allegedly collected and continue to collect debts on the credit they lent for the purpose of wagering on the gambling sites. But the suit states New York law prohibits the enforcement or collection of debts issued for illegal gambling.

Guttman and others in the class seek restitution, statutory and punitive damages, an injunction permanently enjoining the defendants from engaging in the unlawful practices described, interests, and attorney fees and costs of the suit. Guttman and the putative class are represented by attorneys Hunter J. Shkolnik and Annie E. Causey of Napoli Shkolnik in New York City, and by attorney Brittany Weiner of Imbesi Law in New York City.

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York case number 1:15-CV-09084-UA

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