April 5, 2024 3 min read


Florida Governor Enacts Bill on Seized Gambling Assets

On Wednesday, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed HB 5203, a bill addressing the management of assets seized by the Florida Gaming Control Commission, into law

Seizing of assets obtained through illegal means is not uncommon across the United States. While regulations vary from one state to the other, in general, assets obtained through criminal activities are seized and can be resold to benefit different state and county programs. While this can provide vital funding for different programs, it also allows the public to make use of those assets.

Earlier this week, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, confirmed he signed nearly a dozen bills into law, addressing a number of issues in the state. On Wednesday, the Office of the Governor confirmed that a total of 11 bills were signed into law. Among the long list of proposals that received DeSantis’ signature was HB 5203, a bill that outlined how the gambling regulator in the state, the Florida Gaming Control Commission (FGCC), should deal with seized property.

After it was signed into law, the proposal, titled “Property Seized by the Florida Gaming Control Commission,” will come into effect this summer. The effective date for HB 5203 is July 1, 2024. Under the newly signed law, the gambling regulator will be granted the “right of property in and to any machine, apparatus or device,” including money all things of value, if such assets are seized in an investigation.

Assets Seized by Police Will Boost the General Operating Fund

In other words, if the FGCC conducts an investigation and subsequently seizes assets, those assets can then be sold. Any money obtained through this process will then be deposited in the Pari-Mutuel Wagering Trust Fund, which is the primary fund for the FGCC.

It is important to note that under HB 5203, seizures of assets as a result of operations led by municipal police officers within the limits of a municipality shall be forfeited to the benefit of the city. The money obtained from selling such assets or money seized shall be deposited in the city’s general operating fund.

The Florida Gaming Control Commission, the proceeds accrued pursuant to the Florida Contraband Forfeiture Act shall be deposited into the Pari-mutuel Wagering Trust Fund established by s. 550.0951(5) or into the Florida Gaming Control Commission’s Federal Law Enforcement Trust Fund,

reads HB 5203

Recently, a new report revealed that the number of problem gambling contacts in Florida increased, several months after the launch of sports betting in the state. The launch dates back to December when the Seminole Tribe relaunched its sportsbook, Hard Rock Bet. Since then, the Florida Council on Compulsive Gambling, a nonprofit organization that provides support via a helpline in the state, announced that communication increased significantly. The organization said that it has seen an uptick of 100% in the number of emails, calls and text messages ever since the launch of legal betting.


Jerome is a welcome new addition to the Gambling News team, bringing years of journalistic experience within the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry begun after he graduated from college where he played in regular local poker tournaments which eventually lead to exposure towards the growing popularity of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now puts all the knowledge he's accrued to fuel his passion for journalism, providing our team with the latest scoops online.

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