UK Regulator Issues Warning and Fine to TonyBet

Home » UK Regulator Issues Warning and Fine to TonyBet

TonyBet, a leading Estonia-based online casino and sportsbook brand, must pay a fine of £442,750 to the UK Gambling Commission and will receive an official warning from the regulator for failing to implement “fair and transparent terms” on its website, for breaching anti-money laundering laws and a lack of social responsibility.

The announcement comes just a day after the UKGC issued a regulatory action against Vivaro Ltd.

UKGC’s lawsuit:

Today TonyBet, a popular brand owned by Swedish-based company Betsson AB, was warned and fined £442,750 by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC). However, that’s not all as the regulator will add extra requirements to TonyBet’s license to operate in the UK’s regulated iGaming market.

Investigating certain irregularities on the brand’s website, the UK Gambling Commission asserted that:

  • TonyBet may request identification documents for “all withdrawals” while not having insisted on those same checks earlier in the business relationship, potentially hampering withdrawals but not deposits;
  • winnings could be confiscated where consumers failed to provide AML documentation within 30 days;
  • accounts are considered dormant after six months inactivity, when accounts can only be considered dormant after 12 months inactivity.
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However, that’s not all, as there are also failures of social responsibility such as:

  • failing to identify customers who may be at risk of experiencing harms associated with gambling;
  • failing to interact with customers who may be at risk of experiencing harms associated with gambling.

In terms of failure to fight money laundering, the brand is responsible for:

  • failing to conduct adequate risk assessments of the business being used for money laundering and terrorist financing;
  • failing to ensure they have appropriate policies, procedures and controls to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing.

Commenting on the regulatory action, Kay Roberts, UKGC’s Executive Director of Operations, said: “Not only does this case illustrate our drive to clamp down on anti-money laundering and social responsibility failures, but also highlights action we will take against gambling businesses who fail to be fair and open with customers.”

Ready to cooperate:

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However, in a statement, the UK Gambling Commission stated that “TonyBet had initiated an ongoing improvements programme and had cooperated with the regulator throughout its investigation.”

The parent company of the brand under investigation:

Looking at the failures made by TonyBet, its parent company, Betsson AB, will also have to undergo an investigation by the UK regulator to examine whether the company regularly applies anti-money laundering (AML) and social responsibility rules.

Headquartered in Estonia, TonyBet is one of Betsson AB’s most popular global brands. It was founded and officially launched in 2011.

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