Missouri Revised Statutes

Chapter 572
Gambling

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Chapter definitions.

572.010. As used in this chapter the following terms mean:

(1) "Advance gambling activity", a person advances gambling activity if, acting other than as a player, he or she engages in conduct that materially aids any form of gambling activity. Conduct of this nature includes but is not limited to conduct directed toward the creation or establishment of the particular game, lottery, contest, scheme, device or activity involved, toward the acquisition or maintenance of premises, paraphernalia, equipment or apparatus therefor, toward the solicitation or inducement of persons to participate therein, toward the actual conduct of the playing phases thereof, toward the arrangement or communication of any of its financial or recording phases, or toward any other phase of its operation. A person advances gambling activity if, having substantial proprietary control or other authoritative control over premises being used with his or her knowledge for purposes of gambling activity, he or she permits that activity to occur or continue or makes no effort to prevent its occurrence or continuation. The supplying, servicing and operation of a licensed excursion gambling boat under sections 313.800 to 313.840 does not constitute advancing gambling activity;

(2) "Bookmaking", advancing gambling activity by unlawfully accepting bets from members of the public as a business, rather than in a casual or personal fashion, upon the outcomes of future contingent events;

(3) "Contest of chance", any contest, game, gaming scheme or gaming device in which the outcome depends in a material degree upon an element of chance, notwithstanding that the skill of the contestants may also be a factor therein;

(4) "Gambling", a person engages in gambling when he or she stakes or risks something of value upon the outcome of a contest of chance or a future contingent event not under his or her control or influence, upon an agreement or understanding that he or she will receive something of value in the event of a certain outcome. Gambling does not include bona fide business transactions valid under the law of contracts, including but not limited to contracts for the purchase or sale at a future date of securities or commodities, and agreements to compensate for loss caused by the happening of chance, including but not limited to contracts of indemnity or guaranty and life, health or accident insurance; nor does gambling include playing an amusement device that confers only an immediate right of replay not exchangeable for something of value. Gambling does not include any licensed activity, or persons participating in such games which are covered by sections 313.800 to 313.840;

(5) "Gambling device", any device, machine, paraphernalia or equipment that is used or usable in the playing phases of any gambling activity, whether that activity consists of gambling between persons or gambling by a person with a machine. However, lottery tickets, policy slips and other items used in the playing phases of lottery and policy schemes are not gambling devices within this definition;

(6) "Gambling record", any article, instrument, record, receipt, ticket, certificate, token, slip or notation used or intended to be used in connection with unlawful gambling activity;

(7) "Lottery" or "policy", an unlawful gambling scheme in which for a consideration the participants are given an opportunity to win something of value, the award of which is determined by chance;

(8) "Player", a person who engages in any form of gambling solely as a contestant or bettor, without receiving or becoming entitled to receive any profit therefrom other than personal gambling winnings, and without otherwise rendering any material assistance to the establishment, conduct or operation of the particular gambling activity. A person who gambles at a social game of chance on equal terms with the other participants therein does not otherwise render material assistance to the establishment, conduct or operation thereof by performing, without fee or remuneration, acts directed toward the arrangement or facilitation of the game, such as inviting persons to play, permitting the use of premises therefor and supplying cards or other equipment used therein. A person who engages in "bookmaking" as defined in subdivision (2) of this section is not a player;

(9) "Professional player", a player who engages in gambling for a livelihood or who has derived at least twenty percent of his or her income in any one year within the past five years from acting solely as a player;

(10) "Profit from gambling activity", a person profits from gambling activity if, other than as a player, he or she accepts or receives money or other property pursuant to an agreement or understanding with any person whereby he participates or is to participate in the proceeds of gambling activity;

(11) "Slot machine", a gambling device that as a result of the insertion of a coin or other object operates, either completely automatically or with the aid of some physical act by the player, in such a manner that, depending upon elements of chance, it may eject something of value. A device so constructed or readily adaptable or convertible to such use is no less a slot machine because it is not in working order or because some mechanical act of manipulation or repair is required to accomplish its adaptation, conversion or workability. Nor is it any less a slot machine because apart from its use or adaptability as such it may also sell or deliver something of value on a basis other than chance;

(12) "Something of value", any money or property, any token, object or article exchangeable for money or property, or any form of credit or promise directly or indirectly contemplating transfer of money or property or of any interest therein or involving extension of a service, entertainment or a privilege of playing at a game or scheme without charge;

(13) "Unlawful", not specifically authorized by law.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60, A.L. 1991 H.B. 149 Adopted by Referendum, Proposition A, November 3, 1992, A.L. 2014 S.B. 491)

Effective 1-01-17

Constitutionally authorized activities notprohibited.

572.015. Nothing in this chapter prohibits constitutionally authorized activities under Article III, Sections 39(a) to 39(f) of the Missouri Constitution.

(L. 2014 S.B. 491)

Effective 1-01-17

Gambling--penalty.

572.020. 1. A person commits the offense of gambling if he or she knowingly engages in gambling.

2. The offense of gambling is a class C misdemeanor unless:

(1) It is committed by a professional player, in which case it is a class A misdemeanor; or

(2) The person knowingly engages in gambling with a child less than seventeen years of age, in which case it is a class B misdemeanor.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60, A.L. 2014 S.B. 491)

Effective 1-01-17

Promoting gambling in the firstdegree--penalty.

572.030. 1. A person commits the offense of promoting gambling in the first degree if he or she knowingly advances or profits from unlawful gambling or lottery activity by:

(1) Setting up and operating a gambling device to the extent that more than one hundred dollars of money is gambled upon or by means of the device in any one day, or setting up and operating any slot machine; or

(2) Engaging in bookmaking to the extent that he or she receives or accepts in any one day more than one bet and a total of more than one hundred dollars in bets; or

(3) Receiving in connection with a lottery or policy or enterprise:

(a) Money or written records from a person other than a player whose chances or plays are represented by such money or records; or

(b) More than one hundred dollars in any one day of money played in the scheme or enterprise; or

(c) Something of value played in the scheme or enterprise with a fair market value exceeding one hundred dollars in any one day.

2. The offense of promoting gambling in the first degree is a class E felony.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60, A.L. 2014 S.B. 491)

Effective 1-01-17

Promoting gambling in the seconddegree--penalty.

572.040. 1. A person commits the offense of promoting gambling in the second degree if he or she knowingly advances or profits from unlawful gambling or lottery activity.

2. The offense of promoting gambling in the second degree is a class A misdemeanor.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60, A.L. 2014 S.B. 491)

Effective 1-01-17

Possession of gambling records in the firstdegree--penalty.

572.050. 1. A person commits the offense of possession of gambling records in the first degree if, with knowledge of the contents thereof, he or she possesses any gambling record of a kind used:

(1) In the operation or promotion of a bookmaking scheme or enterprise, and constituting, reflecting or representing more than five bets totaling more than five hundred dollars; or

(2) In the operation, promotion or playing of a lottery or policy scheme or enterprise, and constituting, reflecting or representing more than five hundred plays or chances therein.

2. No offense is committed under subdivision (1) of subsection 1 of this section if the gambling record possessed by the person constituted, reflected or represented his or her own bets in a number not exceeding ten.

3. The defendant shall have the burden of injecting the issue under subsection 2.

4. The offense of possession of gambling records in the first degree is a class E felony.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60, A.L. 2014 S.B. 491)

Effective 1-01-17

Possession of gambling records in thesecond degree--penalty.

572.060. 1. A person commits the offense of possession of gambling records in the second degree if, with knowledge of the contents thereof, he or she possesses any gambling record of a kind used:

(1) In the operation or promotion of a bookmaking scheme or enterprise; or

(2) In the operation, promotion or playing of a lottery or policy scheme or enterprise.

2. No offense is committed under subdivision (1) of subsection 1 of this section if the gambling record possessed by the person constituted, reflected or represented bets in a number not exceeding ten.

3. The defendant shall have the burden of injecting the issue under subsection 2.

4. The offense of possession of gambling records in the second degree is a class A misdemeanor.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60, A.L. 2014 S.B. 491)

Effective 1-01-17

Possession of a gambling device--penalty.

572.070. 1. A person commits the offense of possession of a gambling device if, with knowledge of the character thereof, he or she manufactures, sells, transports, places or possesses, or conducts or negotiates any transaction affecting or designed to affect ownership, custody or use of:

(1) A slot machine; or

(2) Any other gambling device, knowing or having reason to believe that it is to be used in the state of Missouri in the advancement of unlawful gambling activity.

2. The offense of possession of a gambling device is a class A misdemeanor.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60, A.L. 2014 S.B. 491)

Effective 1-01-17

Lottery offenses--no defense.

572.080. It is no defense under any section of this chapter relating to a lottery that the lottery itself is drawn or conducted outside Missouri and is not in violation of the laws of the jurisdiction in which it is drawn or conducted.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60)

Effective 1-1-79

Gambling houses, public nuisances--abatement.

572.090. 1. Any room, building or other structure regularly used for any unlawful gambling activity prohibited by this chapter is a public nuisance.

2. The attorney general, circuit attorney or prosecuting attorney may, in addition to all criminal sanctions, prosecute a suit in equity to enjoin the nuisance. If the court finds that the owner of the room, building or structure knew or had reason to believe that the premises were being used regularly for unlawful gambling activity, the court may order that the premises shall not be occupied or used for such period as the court may determine, not to exceed one year.

3. Appeals shall be allowed from the judgment of the court as in other civil actions.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60)

Effective 1-1-79

Preemption--exclusions.

572.100. The general assembly by enacting this chapter intends to preempt any other regulation of the area covered by this chapter. No governmental subdivision or agency may enact or enforce a law that regulates or makes any conduct in the area covered by this chapter an offense, or the subject of a criminal or civil penalty or sanction of any kind. The term "gambling", as used in this chapter, does not include licensed activities under sections 313.800 to 313.840.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60, A.L. 1991 H.B. 149 Adopted by Referendum, Proposition A, November 3, 1992)

Antique slot machines exempt from section 572.120, when.

572.125. 1. It shall be an affirmative defense to any prosecution under this chapter relating to slot machines, if the defendant shows that the slot machine is an antique slot machine and was not operated for gambling purposes while in the defendant's possession. For the purposes of this section, an antique slot machine is one which is over thirty years old.

2. Notwithstanding section 513.660*, whenever the defense provided by subsection 1 of this section is offered, no slot machine seized from any defendant shall be destroyed or otherwise altered until after a final court determination that such defense is not applicable. If the defense is applicable, any such slot machine shall be returned pursuant to provisions of law providing for the return of property.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60)

Effective 1-1-79

*Section 572.120 was transferred to section 513.660 by S.B. 491, 2014, effective 1-01-17.


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