June 13, 2024 3 min read


Fact-checked by Velimir Velichkov

Tabcorp Fined With AU$270,000 for Underage Gambling in 13 Venues

Tabcorp has been slapped with an AU$274,000 fine for failing to stop a minor from gambling in 13 venues and thus undermining the safety and integrity of the industry

At the end of May, we announced that the Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission (VGCCC) filed a series of charges connected to child gambling against Tabcorp.  

Fast forward to today, Australia’s largest gambling company with a staff of over 5,000 has been slapped with a fine of over AU$370,000 ($246,000) including costs after admitting it failed to prevent a minor from gambling across several of its Victoria-based venues.

17-Year-Old Autistic Teen Allowed to Gamble

The state’s regulator discovered that Tabcorp did not stop a 17-year-old autistic teenager from illegally engaging in gambling on multiple occasions between May 2022 and October 2023 at 13 of its venues.

The list included locations like the Preston Hotel, Brunswick Hotel, the Shoppingtown Hotel Doncaster, the Olympic Hotel, the Rose Shamrock, and the Parkville Hotel, among others. 

This prompted Tabcorp’s lawyers to enter guilty pleas to 43 charges at the Magistrates’ Court in Melbourne tied to the minor who was allowed to wager, which goes against the gambling legislation in the province. 

According to the watchdog, the betting giant focused on “raising the game by creating the most engaging betting and entertainment experiences business” had undermined “the integrity and safety” of the gambling industry. 

While Tabcorp admitted its failure to stop the minor from wagering and not offer proper supervision for its electronic betting terminals, this did not stop a magistrate from giving it an AU$274,000 ($182,200) fine without conviction on Thursday. 

Tabcorp was also ordered to pay AU$96,417 ($64,100) in costs, which brought the total sanctions to AU$370,417 ($246,300).

The magistrate could have imposed a maximum fine of AU$716,955 ($477,000).

Ongoing Investment in Safer Gambling Measures

A spokesperson for Tabcorp explained the magistrate acknowledged the important remedies that the company had taken to prevent minors from engaging in gambling activities at its venues.

The company’s statement highlighted their plans to keep investing in their Safer Gambling measures and keep expanding them. 

The measures include the prevention of underage gambling, which represents “an absolute priority for the board and executive team.” 

The spokesperson added Tabcorp will keep working “collaboratively with the VGCCC to support the important work they do to keep the community safe.”

In the meanwhile, VGCCC’s commission’s chief executive, Annette Kimmitt, described the gambling company’s breaches as very serious, calling them “failures” that “undermine the integrity and safety of the industry.”

Kimmitt added that, since providers and their staff members “are on the frontline” of their efforts to stop minors from gambling, they must rigorously check players’ IDs and oversee activities to make sure underage players cannot access their services.

After finishing her master's in publishing and writing, Melanie began her career as an online editor for a large gaming blog and has now transitioned over towards the iGaming industry. She helps to ensure that our news pieces are written to the highest standard possible under the guidance of senior management.

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