The Czech Republic has the right to block unlicensed online gambling sites under the country’s constitution, the Constitutional Court of the Czech Republic has ruled.
The Czech Republic has recently enacted new licensing rules for online gambling sites, prompting several companies to withdraw from the market. The country’s Ministry of Finance is now requiring ISP providers to block unlicensed sites in the country.
That caused concern over the legality of the blocking—as well as forcing ISP providers to block the sites—and the court was asked to issue a ruling.
The Court ruled the blocking was “likely the only effective (although not perfect) solution” to the problem of international competition. The court rejected arguments of censorship saying the IP-blocking was not being done to suppress speech or information, but rather to control an illegal activity.
The court also ruled that the government cannot stop illegal sites from operating, but ISP providers have the means to block the sites.
The court cited several European Union court precedents to support its ruling.