BetonSports founder pleads not guilty in United States

The founder of the London online gambling firm BetonSports Plc pleaded not guilty on Monday to racketeering and other charges. Gary Stephen Kaplan, who was arrested in March in the Dominican Republic, entered the plea in an appearance before Magistrate Judge Mary Ann Medler of the U.S. District Court.

Medler ordered him to remain in custody pending a May 25 detention hearing that may determine if he can be released on bond.

Kaplan was indicted in June of 2006 by a federal grand jury in Missouri which accused him and 10 others of engaging in racketeering, conspiracy and fraud arising from the operation of Costa Rica-based Internet gambling businesses.

BetonSports, which once traded on the London Stock Exchange, was forced in August 2006 to close down its US business which accounted for 95 percent of its profits.

The US crackdown on online gaming began last July with the arrest of the CEO of the company, David Carruthers, during a layover at a Texas airport.