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News / Gamesys Faces A £6 Million Fine For Violating Social Responsibility And Anti-Money Laundering Regulations

Gamesys Faces A £6 Million Fine For Violating Social Responsibility And Anti-Money Laundering Regulations

The Gambling Commission in Great Britain has imposed a fine of £6.0​m on Gamesys over several social responsibility and anti-money laundering failures.

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Gamesys; A Renowned Online Gaming Operator Fined A £6m Fine

Gamesys, a Gibraltar-headquartered firm that operates 16 websites has been directed to pay £6,071,292 by the UK gambling regulators after it was found guilty of violating the rules on anti-money laundering as well as social responsibility.

The Gambling Commission of the UK is responsible for regulating and supervising such activities. The Commission has an agenda for monitoring and controlling the market and making sure that licensees follow the rules set out for them as well as the conditions of their licenses. When breaches are revealed this regulator fines companies, and this is exactly what happened with Gamesys, Bally’s Corporation Company. The gambling regulator spotted these drawbacks in May 2022 in its compliance assessment and clarified that the AML breaches took place between November 2021 and July 2022. In addition to the fine, it is subjected to a third-party audit against the effective implementation of AML and safer gambling policies.

Social Responsibility Failures Of  Gamesys

The Commission outlined several incidents observed at Gamesys during the Commission compliance assessment like social responsibility failures, and poor AML practices. The investigation declares drawbacks like;

  1. Failing to consistently recognize clients who could suffer negative effects from gaming by relying on checks proving whether a customer had an individual voluntary arrangement before and was bankrupt or insolvent as evidence of harmful gambling behaviors.
  2. Limitations of the deposit system which for some customers, the detection of risks was not done quickly – no risk identification occurred when one customer deposited £8255 within three days of opening an account; another lost £ 5968 after just five weeks from opening and another lost £17,482 only 34 days shortly after receiving a new one.
  3. Keeping contact with one consumer after he had lost almost £10,000 and that responsible gambling interaction was the presentation of other new games and promotions.
  4. It didn’t interact with the clients who may be suffering from harm due to gambling and only provided one responsible gambling engagement who had lost £19,709 over five months and more.
  5. The records of interactions and communications for decisions were not always documented in detail enough to allow a reconstruction that complies with the responsible gambling procedures specified by the Licensee.

Failed To Adopt Anti-Money Laundering Protocols

  1. Some customers were able to circumvent some of the Licensee’s AML thresholds in certain instances, which resulted in spending large sums without performing necessary anti-money laundering checks – one customer deposited £14,585 over 28 weeks, another made £18,884 within six months and yet another user kept making payments worth up to £34,280.
  2. Performing insufficient background information of the customers and relying too much on third-party data or the customer’s statements for others with deposits that included over £ 25,000, £58,000, and £65,000 in three and six months.
  3. Through a “Reinvestment of winnings policy” that lacked sufficient power to control the risk that deposited funds could be from illicit sources in addition to the previous winnings.

The Commission Highlights Specific Violations At Gamesys

In ruling the case, the Commission released particular breaches of license conditions. This failure resulted in the £6.0m fine, along with another condition appended to Gamesys’ UK operating license. The Commission observed that Gamesys cooperated consistently with the investigation and recommended remedial actions had been taken. Secondly, the regulator established that there was no criminal money deposited by those specific customers that they reviewed.

Kay Roberts, executive director of operations at the Gambling Commission, said, that as a regulator, our focus is ensuring that the operators use policies and procedures that make gambling free of crimes. We treat this very seriously, so when we find such failures in policies and procedures, the business will likely be subjected to disciplinary and regulatory action.

Now, Gamesys is required to follow all the outlined AML regulations by the authorities as well as conduct regular audits by external groups to carry out safe and transparent business operations.

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Gaming & Gambling

Published Date

January 19, 2024

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