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Online poker goes legit

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- Poker devotees can now skip the smoky casino and legally gamble their dollars away on the couch - at least in the state of Nevada.

A Las Vegas-based casino subsidiary launched the first fully legal poker website in the United States on Tuesday morning.

The site, run by Ultimate Gaming, is only accepting wagers from players in Nevada for now, but likely represents the next chapter in gambling nationwide.

Internet poker, never fully legal, has been strictly outlawed since 2011, when the Department of Justice seized the domain names of the largest offshore sites catering to U.S. customers and blacked them out.

This crackdown, dubbed "black Friday," left poker fanatics with two options: They could either get dressed and visit a card room, or break the law and log into an offshore site.

More recently, the federal government softened its stance on Internet betting, and three states - New Jersey, Delaware and Nevada- have legalized some form of online wagering within their borders.

With Tuesday's launch, Nevada wins the race to bring Texas Hold `em back to the Internet.

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