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Last Updated: Saturday, 1 July 2006, 00:13 GMT 01:13 UK
Call for cap on internet gambling
Mike Weir
Mike Weir wants websites to accept only one card per gambler
Credit card firms should place a cap on how much can be spent on internet gambling sites, an MP has said.

Mike Weir, the Scottish National Party (SNP) MP for Angus, called for a limit of 1,000 a week and for sites to limit players to one credit card each.

It follows cases where gamblers have spent thousands on other people's cards and concerns over gambling addiction.

But both APACS, which represents the card industry, and Partygaming.com say there are major problems with the idea.

They say the way to tackle the problem is to deal with the person's addiction, rather than further limiting access to online gambling.

Online gambling has swept the UK, with four million people now playing each month.

Gambling debts

Online gambling is forecast to grow by 22% this year and with it fears over the number of players with serious debt. The average online gambling debt in the country is 25,000.

The industry already pays 3m a year into a trust to deal with the issue of problem gambling.

Doctors warned earlier this week that internet gambling and super-casinos will cause an explosion in gambling addiction.

They said at the British Medical Association's annual conference that it had become easier to gamble and warned there was little support in place to help those who were addicted.

They called for research into prevention and the availability of more treatment.

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