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Home Gambling Industry LeoVegas gets stiff £1.32m penalty in the UK

LeoVegas gets stiff £1.32m penalty in the UK

LAWS AND REGULATIONS 04 Aug 2022
3 min. read

British pounds.

LeoVegas has become the latest company in the United Kingdom to receive a substantial penalty for several breaches of the established gambling laws in the country. The UK Gambling Commission has outlined those breaches in an official statement published on its official website.

In detailing the £1.32m financial penalty, the watchdog said that LeoVegas had been fined due to social responsibility and anti-money laundering (AML) shortcomings. The operator company runs a number of brands in the United Kingdom, including pinkcasino.co.uk, betuk.com, slotboss.co.uk, 21.co.uk, and the namesake leovegas.com. The offenses date to a period between October 2019 and October 2020 and will trigger a 12-month review of the operator.

All of these brands have now received an official warning and have been told to ensure that their social responsibility policies are up on par with industry standards in the country. The same applies to their AML policies. The update was accompanied by a statement from Gambling Commission Director of Enforcement and Intelligence Leanne Oxley.

Oxley explained that the shortcomings were detected as a result of "focused compliance activity." The director assured that similar actions will be taken against any and all operators who do not learn how to uphold the necessary operational standards in the jurisdiction. Oxley was unapologetic in the final conclusion, too, arguing that operators are failing to uphold their obligations to consumers.

"This case is a further example of operators failing to protect customers and failing to be alive to money laundering risks within their business," she said. The Commission proceeded to outline the specific problems it had detected with LeoVegas’ offer in the United Kingdom.

Those included spending limits that were set higher than average for the Safer Gambling Team customer review. This is the measure that triggers manual examination of a customer’s spending if the operator suspects someone may be exhibiting signs of problem gambling.

The Commission established that LeoVegas had not acted on its own policies for consumer interaction with customers who were exhibiting signs of harm, such as denied deposits, canceled withdrawals, and extended gameplay sessions. Other shortcomings were also named here.

The Commission moved to explain how the AML standards had been breached as well. The regulator argued that the AML financial triggers for review were "too high" and "unrealistic" in order to effectively manage the issue at hand, i.e. terrorist financing and money laundering risks.

These threshold triggers were part of the overall problem at LeoVegas as they were set too high. The UKGC called them inadequate and ineffective specifically. Another issue the company registered is that too much money was allowed to be spent without any background check or knowledge of some customers. The full penalty has outlined all the sections of the current law that were broken.LeoVegas is not the only operator to have been hit by the UKGC in recent months. Sky Betting and Gaming received a $1.5m penalty in March along with Camelot. Before that in February, BetVictor was hit with a penalty worth $2.6m.


Image credit: Unsplash.com

04 Aug 2022
3 min. read
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