The United Kingdom’s Gambling Commission (UKGC) has issued a hefty penalty to Petfre (Gibraltar) Limited, the name under which Betfred.com is registered in Gibraltar. The commission claims that it identified multiple responsibility and anti-money laundering failures within Petfre’s business.
Betfred Failed to Protect Its Customers
According to UKGC’s announcement, the operator will have to pay a fine of around $3.07 million to make up for its shortcomings. The shortcomings, the regulator said, include a lack of controls to prevent customers from losing money at high speeds and other safety gambling failures.
The UKGC cited a case where a customer was allowed to spend around $75,000 within ten hours of registering an account. In addition, Betfred’s online subsidiaries failed to contact high-risk gamblers on time and did not interact with them often enough. For example, one customer was first contacted when they deposited $22,000 and lost almost half of it. The second interaction, however, came four months later when the customer had deposited $345,000 and lost $74,000.
AML and CTF Failures Were Recorded
The UKGC noted that the operator also had multiple AML and CTF failures. The company was negligent to the risks connected to certain geographic areas, customers, transactions, products and services. Furthermore, Betfred lacked the appropriate policies and measures to prevent fraud risks. This included inadequate thresholds and a lack of sufficient customer information.
In addition, Betfred’s subsidiaries didn’t ensure that their policies are effectively implemented. The brands refused to follow the UKGC’s guidance and didn’t take its guidelines into account. The UKGC mentioned that the operator didn’t thoroughly implement the measures described in the Money Laundering Regulations. Thus, the company failed to identify and adequately respond to risks.
Lastly, the regulator critiqued the operator for the insufficient training of its employees and its failure to scrutinize transactions to make sure they are within the customer’s knowledge. Fund checks were not adequately implemented.
Britain’s Watchdog Is Committed to Punishing Incompliant Operators
Betfred will be contacted about the matter through an official warning for its failures. Following that, the company will be expected to pay the fine imposed by the UKGC.
Leanne Oxley, director of enforcement and intelligence at the UKGC, pointed out that the Betfred case is yet another example of the UKGC’s willingness to investigate and sanction incompliant online operators.
We expect this gambling business and all other licensees to review this case and look closely to see if they need to make further improvements to demonstrate active compliance. Where standards do not improve, tougher enforcement will follow.Leanne Oxley, director of enforcement and intelligence, UKGC
The Commission recently fined Betway for promoting gambling to children. As a result, the sports betting operator was slapped with a $464,000 fine.