Gambling Addict Tells French Gov, "J'accuse"

By Will Godfrey 12/12/11

A French problem gambler blames his government for failing to block him from online poker sites.

The Frenchman couldn't stop gambling online. Photo via

A French gambling addict is trying his luck in a bold lawsuit against his country's government, claiming they should have stopped him playing poker on the internet. France allows problem gamblers to register online, adding their names to a list of people whom gambling sites and casinos aren't allowed to sign up as members. So far 36,000 people are on the list. But the 37-year-old from Reims claims that when he registered, the interior ministry recorded an incorrect address for him, meaning he was able to continue gambling compulsively. He's suing the French government for $132,000. His lawyer, Emmanuel Ludot, says, “We all know that [online games] rely on the addiction and sickness of players.”

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Will Godfrey is the former editor-in-chief of TheFix. He was also the founding editor-in-chief of, and previously co-founded a magazine for prisoners in London. His work has appeared in Salon, Pacific Standard, AlterNet and The Nation among others. He is currently the Executive Director at FILTER. You can find Will on Linkedin and Twitter.