Felony Offenses in the Texas Penal Code

Austin Criminal Lawyer

Federal Defense Attorney

Texas Penal Code, Section 47.02 - Gambling


        § 47.02.  GAMBLING.
        (a)  A person commits an offense if he:
                (1)  makes a bet on the partial or final result of a game or contest or on the performance of a participant in a game or contest;
                (2)  makes a bet on the result of any political nomination, appointment, or election or on the degree of success of any nominee, appointee, or candidate;  or
                (3)  plays and bets for money or other thing of value at any game played with cards, dice, balls, or any other gambling device.
        (b)  It is a defense to prosecution under this section that:
                (1)  the actor engaged in gambling in a private place;
                (2)  no person received any economic benefit other than personal winnings;  and
                (3)  except for the advantage of skill or luck, the risks of losing and the chances of winning were the same for all participants.
        (c)  It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the actor reasonably believed that the conduct:
                (1)  was permitted under Chapter 2001, Occupations Code;
                (2)  was permitted under Chapter 2002, Occupations Code;
                (3)  consisted entirely of participation in the state lottery authorized by the State Lottery Act (Chapter 466, Government Code);
                (4)  was permitted under the Texas Racing Act (Article 179e, Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes);  or
                (5)  consisted entirely of participation in a drawing for the opportunity to participate in a hunting, fishing, or other recreational event conducted by the Parks and Wildlife Department.
        (d)  An offense under this section is a Class C misdemeanor.
        (e)  It is a defense to prosecution under this section that a person played for something of value other than money using an electronic, electromechanical, or mechanical contrivance excluded from the definition of "gambling device" under Section 47.01(4)(B).

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