The UK Gambling Commission has fined another operator as it seeks to enforce tougher regulatory enforcement against violations of the UK’s gambling rules and regulations.
The latest on the commission’s list is BoyleSports, Ireland’s largest online bookie. Last week, news broke out that the commission had fined the bookie for £2.8 million over money laundering related failures. The commission said that its investigation covered the bookie’s BoyleSports.com and BoyleCasino.com sites.
In its investigation, the regulator uncovered a number of violations and failures in BoyleSports’ online gambling activities in the UK. The commission discovered that BoyleSports had issues regarding money-laundering prevention and money-laundering risk assessment. The regulator pointed out specifically that the bookie failed to implement proper money laundering risk assessment procedures and that its anti-money laundering policies, procedures and controls were inadequate and could not be implemented effectively.
Due to BoyleSports’ failings, the commission has imposed a hefty penalty while also attaching stricter conditions on the bookie’s operating license. One of the conditions includes a maintained appointment of a duly qualified Money Laundering Reporting (MLR) Officer who must carry a Personal Management License (PML) from the UKGC. On top of this, the appointed MLR officer must attend annual refresher training in anti-money laundering and must evidence their training to the regulator. Additionally, the BoyleSports is expected to ensure that all PML holders, top management, and control personnel undertake outsourced anti-money laundering training and undergo outsourced refresher training every year moving forward. The regulator also tasked the bookie to continually review the effectiveness of its anti-money laundering policies and procedures and implement more effective ones if necessary.
BoyleSports is the latest operator to have been hit by fines, additional license conditions and procedure reviews by the UKGC. Just recently, the regulator has hit other operators such as BGO Entertainment Limited, GAN PLC and NetBet Enterprises Limited for procedural and regulatory failures. The regulator has ramped up its enforcement in a bid to continue to crack down on failing operators through its tough and proactive compliance and enforcement work. It continually monitors currently operating providers and as well as new UK casino sites.
Commenting on this recent news, Richard Watson, the executive director of the UKGC has said that It is vital that all gambling businesses have effective anti-money laundering policies and procedures firmly in place and as part of the commission’s ongoing drive to raise standards, it will continue to take tough action against operators who do not.
News about BoyleSports’ fine comes as the UK gaming industry prepares for the imminent 2005 Gaming Act review. The review aims to realign the UK’s gaming laws with the times and bring about better regulation and consumer safety.
In light of this, Flutter Entertainment’s chief executive officer, Peter Jackson, has shared his stance through regarding the matter saying that the UK’s gambling industry is badly in need of a review. He also stressed that MPs should focus on reforms that have a meaningful impact on industry instead of cosmetic gestures while noting that all of the industry’s stakeholders, primarily the government and the operators, should work towards striking a balance between policies, operations, and safety so that they can build an industry that will not only command the support of its customers but also the support of the wider society as well.