The regulatory agency for gambling in France has recently disclosed a list of prohibited money-wagering sites. In Spain, more than 30 measures aimed at promoting responsible gaming among young people have been approved. In the meantime, Bet365 has been fined €400 000 by authorities in the Netherlands. German operators are being urged to enhance their cooperation efforts. And finally, an ongoing investigation reveals that a man from Limburg has been accused of committing an online casino fraud worth millions of euros since 2008.
French watchdog has revealed blacklisted gambling websites
The French regulator ANJ has published a monthly blacklist of gambling websites subject to blocking and delisting orders, including brands like Campeonbet and WinUnique. ANJ has issued 152 orders and blocked 532 URLs related to illegal gambling since June 2022.
The regulatory body has improved procedures to take faster action, including seeking advice from an administrative judge to petition ISPs to restrict access to unauthorized websites. The blocking process can now take one to two months.
ANJ warns of the risks of playing on illegal sites and advises players to report such sites to the regulator.
New responsible gaming measures aimed at youth have been greenlit in Spain
Over 30 fresh measures geared towards encouraging responsible gaming habits among young individuals have been endorsed by the council of ministers in Spain. Included in the Royal Decree aimed at fostering secure gaming environments, these actions are intended to enhance safeguards against problem gambling in the nation.
Tailored for individuals aged 18 to 25, the latest guidelines aim to mitigate hazardous or troublesome gambling practices. The government will use consumer spend to define risk profiles, and individuals who incur a net loss of €600 (or €200 if they are under 25) within a span of three weeks will be classified as heavy gamblers.
Furthermore, the Royal Decree incorporates supplementary measures for players who have applied for safer gambling limitations on their betting accounts or have enrolled in the country's self-exclusion registry.
The Netherlands imposes a massive fine on Bet365
The Dutch gambling authority, de Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), has imposed a fine of €400 000 on Hillside New Media Malta, the operator of Bet365, for breaching regulations that prohibit advertising to underage individuals.
The KSA investigation was launched after an 18-year-old received several emails from Bet365 promoting its services and certain bonuses, in violation of Dutch law prohibiting licensed operators from targeting individuals within the young adult age group.
The investigation found that other players in the age range were also contacted via email, leading to a breach of the Dutch Gambling Act. Bet365 argued that KSA had "misinterpreted" the Act, but the appeal was rejected and the fine upheld.
German operators have been encouraged to increase their collaboration efforts
The Gemeinsamen Glücksspielbehörde der Länder (GGL), the German regulator responsible for gaming, has commended licensed operators for their performance in the first three months under the Fourth State Treaty on Gambling. However, the GGL has also called for greater collaboration from operators to further improve the country's market and curb illegal activities.
In a session at the University of Hohenheim's Research Centre for Gaming, Ronald Benter, who leads the GGL with Benjamin Schwanke, emphasized the need for online gambling providers to cooperate more closely with the regulator, particularly regarding security deposits and defects in virtual slot machines.
Benter stressed the importance of working together to create a level playing field while protecting players and minors but stated that more effort is required from the providers in this regard.
Fraud probe: Limburg man linked to online casinos since 2008, involving millions
Limburg man suspected of multi-million euro fraud in online casinos since 2008, according to an ongoing investigation. Last year, a man and woman were arrested in Peel en Maas, Limburg for their involvement in fraud.
The investigation, which has been ongoing for fifteen years, shows that the man may have been committing fraud since 2008. The 42-year-old man and his 37-year-old wife were arrested by the FIOD, the Dutch tax authorities' investigative service. The couple allegedly earned over two million euros through fraud with online casinos. The woman was suspected of money laundering, while the man was suspected of money laundering, forgery, and fraud.
The couple is accused of collecting welcome bonuses for new customers at online casinos using false identity documents and other false pretenses. The funds earned through fraud were invested in real estate, among other things. The FIOD discovered the couple during another investigation, but Visser, the FIOD spokesperson, couldn't disclose which one.
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