Bookmaker News of the Week

By Martin Green30 June 2019
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Bookmaker News of the Week

The UK Gambling Commission dished out fines of £19.7 million in 2018 over failures to monitor problem gamblers and stop money launderers. Paddy Power Betfair was among the nine operators hit by a record-breaking tally of fines. A total of £13 million went to the Treasury and £6.7 million was used to compensate consumers and other affected parties. Online casino operator Daub Alderney was handed the largest fine. Neil McArthur, the commission’s chief executive, said: “I want gambling consumers in Britain to be able to enjoy the fairest and safest gambling in the world and I want gambling operators to work with us to put customer enjoyment and safety at the top of their corporate agenda. As our report shows, we will be tough when we find operators bending the rules or failing to meet our expectations.”

A Betfred punter has decided to take the bookmaker to Independent Betting Adjudication Service after it refused to pay out £189,000 in winnings. David Smith, a 60-year-old horseracing fan from Loughborough, picked five winners: Ardera Cross at 40/1, Indian Temple at 7/1, Shanroe at 9/2, Pennsylvania Dutch at 15/2 and Sir Busker at 4/1. He said he intended his sixth selection to be Bialco in the 2.15 race at Perth. He wrote down the odds on that horse and “2.15 P” next to it, but he actually wrote down the name of Bailarico. Bialco won the race, but Bailarico ran in the 3.40pm and was unsuccessful. As a result, Betfred only paid him £23,000 for five winners, and he said the bookmaker should have paid him £212,000 for all six, so he is taking the case to the arbitrator. “Unfortunately the customer had written Bailarico on his slip which was running in a race at Goodwood that day and finished third,” said Betfred. “Our rules state that we settle on the named selection.”

The parents of a gambling addict who killed himself have launched a legal bid to make the UK government liable for his death. Charles and Liz Ritchie, founders of charity and campaigning group Gambling With Lives, want the inquest into his death to consider Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which is the right to life. They told the Guardian: “The government has been well aware that gambling exposes people to the risk of addiction and consequent suicide, but has failed to take effective action to regulate the industrialised electronic gambling that can cause such severe addiction. Over many years they failed to regulate gambling, educate the public about the health risks or make adequate treatment resources available to people who suffer harm. They have allowed the industry far too much influence and control to keep the health risks hidden and failed to demand sufficient funding to pay for treatment.” If successful it could trigger many more claims.

Bet365 has expanded into Mexico after its .mx platform was approved by the Direccion General de Juegos y Sorteos. The Stoke-based firm is teaming up with local TV provider Ganador Azteca for the launch, and it is mulling over an expansion into Argentina next. It has just been revealed that Bet365 is one of 10 international operators competing to secure one-of-seven Buenos Aires online gambling licences, and it will partner with local bingo operator Pasteko SA there.

William Hill has stopped accepting bets in Switzerland on “short notice” and “for regulatory reasons.” It is declaring all ante post bets void. One of them is on Ashleigh Barty to win Wimbledon each-way, a bet placed at €1,500. That could have led to a potential payout of around €77,000. Since the bet was placed, Barty has won the French Open, risen to number one in the world rankings and gone in to just 7/2 to win Wimbledon, so the punter is unlikely to be best pleased about the decision.