Online Casino Launched by Former Chief of Canadian tribe White Bear

Posted: December 9, 2013

Updated: October 4, 2017

Former White Bear Tribal Chief Sets Up Online Casino without Governmental Support

There is another online casino in Canada as of this week, but this one has not been backed by the provincial government. Indeed, Bernie Shepherd – the former chief of the Canadian White Bear tribe in Saskatchewan – may get in some trouble with the local authorities after his casino – Northern Bear Casino – went live in partnership with GeoBet.

The government has therefore filed a complaint against the Northern Bear Casino with the national Royal Canadian Mounted Police, but the outcome is still uncertain, with Shepherd’s previous record painting an interesting picture.

The local gambling news has reported that Shepherd already has casino related history. Back in the early 1990s when he was chief of the White Bear tribe, he organized a casino running out of the First Nation’s Reserve.

It is interesting that no matter the police intervention, there were successive discussions with the local government and an agreement was reached. Thanks to it, six First Nations land casinos have been opened in the province, bringing millions of dollars in revenue every year.

In a interview with Craig Lederhouse of CBC Radio’s show “The Afternoon Edition”, Shepherd commented on his online casino, saying that as a First Nations operation he has the necessary rights to launch it, in accordance with Canadian gambling laws. He added: “There’s lots of casinos online. If you wanted to start a casino, you can start a casino. You just have to have the where-with-all to do it. So it’s not illegal to own an online casino.”

Donna Harpauer, the minister responsible for the Saskatchewan Liquor & Gaming Authority commented that the local authorities have no intention in regulating online gambling, as the risks are higher than the potential revenues. She added that Shepherd’s new casino, with servers in the Virgin Islands, is subject to further discussions as there are unsolved legal issues.

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