The Washington Times - August 24, 2009, 05:44PM

We knew it was too good to be true, right?

A  three-judge federal panel has shot down efforts by the state of Delaware to allow for betting on individual sporting events in the state, supporting arguments from major sports leagues that it would violate federal law.


Delaware has not yet decided whether to further appeal the ruling. At least one legal expert told the Associated Press that a getting an appeal would be hard because the court was not split on the decision.

Sports leagues had asked for an injunction to prevent the sports betting, but the injunction was denied by a lower court. The federal appeals court chose to avoid the injunction issue altogether, instead ruling directly on the leagues’ claims that the Delaware plan violated federal law.

A 1992 law currently restricts sports betting to four states, Nevada, Delaware, Oregon and Montana, who were exempted from a federal ban because they had created sports betting operations prior to the ban’s effect. Delaware was grandfathered in because it had briefly run a sports lottery in 1976. Officials there wanted to resume sports betting as a way to generate revenue for the state.

Sports leagues, however, said the exemptions did not apply to bets on individual games, but instead allowed only for multi-game parlay bets.

Delaware is still expected to move forward with some sort of multi-game offering.