MAILING OF RAFFLE/LOTTERY TICKETS PROHIBITED
KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS MEMORANDUM
TO: ALL NEBRASKA KofC COUNCILS, OFFICERS, & MEMBERS
FROM: KENNETH J. LEROY, ESQ., NEBRASKA STATE ADVOCATE
RE: MAILING OF RAFFLE/LOTTERY TICKETS PROHIBITED
It has been brought to my attention that KofC Councils are distributing raffle/lottery tickets (for council and/or State games) through the U.S. Postal System. Such mailings by, on behalf of, or in the name of the Knights of Columbus must immediately stop.
With limited exception (none of which apply to a Knight entity), mailing any type of gaming device and/or payment for purchase of a gaming device in a game of chance (for gaming) is a violation of Nebraska and Federal Law. Federal Law also prohibits such gaming activity within the U.S. via the internet. Reference to said laws will be provided on request. Between the applicable overlapping State and Federal provisions, it is impossible for a Knight entity to “exempt” or otherwise render the law inapplicable to such a gaming device (any ticket, chip, etc. used in any game of chance) by adding a statement to the ticket/chip or attempting to alter its nature by description, definition, or operation. Beware that the long established Federal Law (almost as old as the postal system itself) ultimately provides criminal sanctions for certain such mailings; said sanctions are imposed on natural persons (Officers and members), and not on an entity (a council). All of the private parcel carriers (FedEx, UPS, etc.) also have prohibitions concerning the transportation of such a gaming device and/or the proceeds from the sale thereof. A lottery/raffle may be advertised, promoted, and referenced through the U.S. Mail.
The Federal and State laws applicable to gaming activities are complex and on some issues in conflict. All Councils and Officers are urged to obtain/retain legal counsel before conducting any such activities on behalf of the Knights of Columbus.
Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 402.614.8095 should there be any questions or concerns.