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Paxton Wants Fantasy Sports Lawsuit Moved

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton wants a lawsuit filed against his office by fantasy sports site DraftKings moved to Travis County.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton at a press conference in Austin on Jan. 13, 2016.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton wants a lawsuit filed against his office by fantasy sports site DraftKings moved to Travis County. 

In January, Paxton's office issued an opinion equating fantasy sites like DraftKings and FanDuel to illegal gambling. FanDuel agreed to stop offering paid contests in the state, but DraftKings fought back, filing suit in Dallas County. In a motion filed Monday, Paxton argued that the company's lawsuit should be moved from Dallas to Travis County, or that the Dallas County court should dismiss it for “lack of jurisdiction.”

In the lawsuit, DraftKings asks the court to issue a declaratory judgment that fantasy sports websites are permissible under Texas law. The suit argues that fantasy sports “are contests of skill” and not chance, therefore they do not constitute gambling. The lawsuit equates fantasy sports to events like “bass fishing, bull riding, stock picking, and even beauty pageants.”

Paxton’s motion claims the lawsuit was filed improperly because “no substantial part of the events or omissions giving rise of this suit occurred in Dallas County.”

Lawyers for DraftKings have argued that the Dallas courts make the most sense. Representatives for the company did not return requests for comment Monday. 

“Multiple customers based in Dallas County closed their accounts with DraftKings in the days following the publication of the Attorney General’s opinion letter,” the original lawsuit said.

A significant number of the Delaware-based company’s Texas customers live in the Dallas area, and the company has business partnerships with locally based organizations including the Dallas Cowboys, lawyer Robert Walters added.

Paxton has “thrown the legality of DraftKings’ entire Dallas operation into doubt,” he wrote.

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