Two operators fined
Two major gambling operators have been fined a total of €750,000 ($828,000) by Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), the Dutch gambling authority.
Malta-based LeoVegas received a fine of €350,000 ($386,000). Royal Panda, a subsidiary of LeoVegas, was also fined €400,000 ($441,000). These fines relate to offenses that took place between August 2018 and January 2019.
Both brands accepted payments from Dutch IP addresses through the popular iDEAL payment processor
The offenses in question are typical for KSA fines. The authority alleges that these two online gambling platforms were allowing Dutch customers to use their platforms, depsite not having a license to offer its services in the country.
Both brands accepted payments from Dutch IP addresses through the popular iDEAL payment processor. KSA also ruled that the operators offered games of chance that are not legal in the Netherlands.
Implications for both brands
LeoVegas acquired RoyalPanda at the end of 2017. Both brands were hoping to gain a foothold in the upcoming regulated online gambling market in the Netherlands.
two-year suspension before they can apply for a legitimate license
This new sector is set to go live by the start of 2021. However, both LeoVegas and Royal Panda will face a delay in applying for licenses as a result of their transgressions. The Dutch government is imposing a two-year suspension before they can apply for a legitimate license.
The government labelled the operators “cowboys”, as they continued to target Dutch residents despite multiple warnings.
Troubles continue for LeoVegas
This is not the first time LeoVegas has fallen foul of a national gambling regulator. It was only this week that it won a court ruling in Sweden allowing it to extend its two-year online gambling license to five years.
The original reasoning for the Swedish authorities to curtail LeoVegas’ license was due to its previous transgressions in the United Kingdom market. This dates back to May 2018 when the company was slapped with a £600,000 ($756,000) fine by the UK Gambling Commission.
Over the past couple of years, the KSA has been significantly cracking down on overseas online gambling platforms targeting its residents.
The authority is on track to surpass the €1.8m ($2m) in fines it handed out in 2018. This compares to €1m ($1.1m) in fines in 2017, and €410,00 ($453,000) in 2016.