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Loophole Found In Mass. Antiscalping Law

(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — One of the largest and most controversial ticket resellers in Massachusetts has found a loophole in the state’s new antiscalping law that allows it to charge what it wants within Boston city limits.

Ace Ticket Worldwide Inc., which was sued last November after charging a fan $375 for a $40 Red Sox ticket, claimed in court documents that the sale was legal because the antiscalping law does not cover events in the city, which includes any tickets for Red Sox, Bruins, Celtics, and any concerts or theater events held in the city’s numerous venues.

“This is a complicated, archaic area of the law,” Joseph Shea, an attorney representing Ace Ticket told the Boston Globe. “Especially with the potential of Internet fraud, the Legislature may want to update and conform the law. But the fact is that presently there is no statute governing the resale of tickets to events in Boston.”

The argument by the ticketing company came as a shock to state regulators and officials in the ticket industry, but due to the complexity of the current laws, few were willing to dismiss the idea that a Boston-sized loophole could exist.

Attorney’s representing David Kurzman, the purchaser of the $375 ticket, said Ace’s interpretation of the law could lead to “illogical, unintended, and absurd results.”

The state’s current reselling law requires ticket agencies to obtain licenses from the state Department of Public Safety and limits any markup on the tickets to $2 plus certain service charges. Resellers claim the law is out of date because they typically have to pay well above face value for the best tickets.

Ace Tickets claims all events held in Boston are licensed by the city under a separate law, and are therefore exempt from the state antiscalping law.

Public safety officials, who have never fully enforced the law, described it as a “mess” and acknowledged that “no one is complying with the letter of the law,” according to the paper. They pointed out that stricter enforcement would probably drive Massachusetts-based resellers out of business while allowing out-of-state companies to continue selling tickets over the Web. –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers