Posted on: September 15, 2020, 09:57h.
Last updated on: September 15, 2020, 10:22h.
The widow of 5Dimes founder William Sean Creighton, aka “5Dimes Tony,” is speaking out on the future of the offshore sportsbook. But current customers are voicing their anger for how the company is ceasing business in the United States.
Last week, 5Dimes abruptly announced that it was exiting the US, a market it had served illegally offshore from Costa Rica for more than two decades. The internet platform teased a potential entry into the legal, regulated sports betting industry, which was liberalized through the US Supreme Court’s 2018 decision that the longtime federal ban on sports betting was unconstitutional.
“I am the widow of Sean ‘Tony’ Creighton. Sean worked incredibly hard to provide the best online sports betting experience to the 5Dimes community,” said Laura Varela.
Many of you are asking about the brand’s future,” she continued. “I am limited in what I can disclose right now. But there are definitely some positive surprises in store for you. I am working with experts and consultants to make sure that the brand that you have come to love is well represented in the regulated US market.”
Creighton was murdered in a kidnap-for-ransom gone wrong in 2018. His body was confirmed found by the US State Department in September of 2019. His remains were discovered in a cemetery in a small fishing village in Costa Rica, some 100 miles from where he was abducted.
Creighton had been deemed a “bad actor” by the US government for operating an illegal, offshore sportsbook. He was accused of laundering $2 million in 2016 by federal prosecutors by accepting deposits and withdrawals via Amazon gift cards. US financial institutions are banned from facilitating transactions related to illegal gambling enterprises.
5Dimes says it will stop accepting bets from US customers on September 21. Current accounts have until September 25 to withdraw their funds, otherwise the money will be transferred to a claims administrator.
Customers are reporting on Twitter that it’s no easy task to collect their money.
— 5Dimes 🐐 Sportsbook (@5DimesSB) September 14, 2020
“Five days since I requested payout. Money still in the account, but the cashier says I can’t request money since it is paid out. If you want us back in the future, you better pay out what we are owed,” @Mikeak01 tweeted.
“Still waiting on my bitcoin payout over six days now,” said @paysnoopcali. “I hope for your sake that you’re lying about wanting to come back to the US market. You’ll have a wrath of your current customers waging a negative publicity campaign against you,” added @FackoTall.
With legal sports betting now operational in 18 states, no longer do millions of US residents who want to make a bet on a game have to access an offshore site.
A recent study conducted on behalf of the American Gaming Industry found that spending with illegal offshore bookmakers dropped 25 percent last year in states that have legalized sports wagering.
“We’ve known for a long time that Americans like to bet on sports. This research affirms their interest in moving toward the protections of the legal market,” declared AGA President and CEO Bill Miller.
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