Latest Gambling News: Swedish Regulator To Appeal Zimpler Setback, and more

Kat Pilkington

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June 17, 2024

Catch up on six of the stories our gambling compliance analysts have covered lately, and stay up-to-date on the latest news.

Swedish Regulator To Appeal Zimpler Setback

The Swedish Gambling Authority (SGA) has not ended its battle with payments provider Zimpler and is set to appeal its latest legal defeat.

The regulator announced on Thursday (June 13) that it would appeal an administrative court ruling that it did not have the legal standing to take enforcement action against Zimpler.

The SGA had attempted to fine the payments company for what it alleged was facilitating illegal online gambling.

"The Gaming Authority does not share the administrative court's assessment and is therefore appealing the verdict to the Court of Appeal in Jönköping," the regulator said in a statement.

"Contrary to the administrative law, the [SGA] believes that Zimpler AB's payment intermediary service means that the games in question are aimed at Sweden. By providing its payment service, Zimpler AB has promoted illegal gambling."

Indonesia Announces Anti-Online Gambling Task Force

The Indonesian President has condemned online gambling anew, promising that a new, punitive task force will maintain the government’s “serious” approach to “eradicating and combating” the underground industry.

President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) said in Jakarta on Wednesday (June 12) that the Gambling Eradication Task Force is set to be formed to confront “economic and social disasters”, and publicise gambling’s harm to families and its links to “bankruptcy, divorce, violence and murder”, the official Antara news agency reported.

The president said online gambling “constitutes a transboundary and transnational organised crime [phenomenon] that [ought to prompt] people to take independent actions to resist and avoid it rather than solely relying on the government's measures”, the report said.

Jokowi said the government has “taken down 2.1m gambling websites so far”, according to a video address in Indonesian that the government uploaded to YouTube.

"Don’t engage in gambling, either offline or online. If you have spare money, save it or use it to start a business," Jokowi said.

More moderate voices in the world’s largest Muslim-majority nation have occasionally flirted with regulation of gambling as a means of better controlling aberrant social outcomes, but the prospects for substantive reform remain dim.

UK Prime Minister's Aide Placed Bet On Election Date

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s close senior aide Craig WIlliams has admitted to placing a bet on when the general election would take place days before it was announced.

Williams, who has served as parliamentary private secretary to the Prime Minister since October 2022, confirmed on social media: "I've been contacted by a journalist about Gambling Commission inquiries into one of my accounts and thought it best to be totally transparent.

“I put a flutter on the general election some weeks ago. This has resulted in some routine inquiries and I confirm I will fully cooperate with these. I don't want to be a distraction from the campaign, I should have thought through how it looked,” he said.

Media reports claimed before Williams' announcement that he had placed a £100 bet on a July election that would payout £500.

Williams is standing for election in Montgomeryshire and Glyndwr.

Arkansas Approves Cherokee Nation Casino Proposal

The Arkansas Racing Commission (ARC) voted Wednesday (June 12) to proceed with the application from Cherokee Nation Entertainment to build its Legends Casino project in Pope County, after the project received a letter of support from local leaders.

The Cherokee Nation’s next step will be a presentation to the commission on June 27 and to have their application receive a formal score. Once those steps are completed, the ARC will vote on granting a gaming license.

Mississippi-based Gulfside Casino Partnerships also submitted an application that was rejected by commissioners due to it lacking a letter of support from local leaders.

This is the commission’s third attempt at issuing a casino license in Pope County. State courts have voided the previous licenses to Gulfside Casino Partnership and Cherokee Nation Business.

Voters approved Amendment 100 to the Arkansas State Constitution on November 5, 2018, to allow four casinos in the state. Currently, Saracen Casino is operational in Pine Bluff, while casino gaming is also offered at Oaklawn Racing & Gaming in Hot Springs and Southland Gaming & Racing in West Memphis.

Brazil Delays Voting On Bill 2234/22

Brazil’s Senate Constitution and Justice Committee (CCJ) has again delayed voting on Bill 2234/22, which would legalise the operation of casinos, bingo, Jogo do Bicho and other online games not addressed by Law 14,790/2023.

After 45 minutes of heated discussion, the president of the CCJ, Davi Alcolumbre, postponed the vote in frustration to next Wednesday (June 19), when it will be the exclusive item on the agenda “because all the senators will be here to vote with their fingers next week”, he said.

“But for the last time, I'm not taking care of those who submitted the motion and withdrew it. I'm not catering to those who presented it at the time and thought they were going to win or lose, and who today have changed to the opposition. I'm trying to be faithful to the chair of the committee, to try as best I can to give the go-ahead,” Alcolumbre warned.

Connecticut Targets Bovada With Cease-And-Desist Letter

The Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection’s (DCP) Gaming Division confirmed Tuesday (June 11) that it will be sending a cease-and-desist letter to Bovada, becoming the second state to target the offshore online sports betting and casino operator.

“There are only three platforms licensed to operate in the state of Connecticut,” a DCP spokeswoman told Vixio GamblingCompliance in an email. Those operators are DraftKings, FanDuel and Fanatics Sportsbook.

The cease-and-desist letter will be sent to Curaçao-based Harp Media B.V., which operates Bovada.com and Bovada.lv.

The prominent offshore sportsbook and online casino operates in most U.S. states, but is unavailable to residents of Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Maryland, and Delaware, which were all either early adopters of regulated internet gaming or have been the location of federal prosecutions against offshore gambling.

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