Malta Operator Again Contests Dutch Enforcement

June 13, 2024
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A Maltese operator is continuing its bitter dispute with the Netherlands Gambling Authority, contesting the latest in a series of fines for allegedly offering illegal gambling in the Netherlands.
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A Maltese operator is continuing its bitter dispute with the Netherlands Gambling Authority (KSA), contesting the latest in a series of fines for allegedly offering illegal gambling in the Netherlands.

LCS Limited was first issued an “order subject to penalty” in 2022 for what the KSA said was an illegal offer of gambling in the Netherlands without a licence via sons-of-slots.com.

The company was ordered to pay €55,000 per week, up to a total of €165,000, so long as it continued to misbehave in the eyes of the regulator.

That was followed up by a fine of more than €2m for the same infraction over a year later in October 2023.

LCS said in October that the fine was “excessively punitive”.

On Tuesday (June 11), the KSA once again took aim at LCS, delivering another €165,000 penalty based on what it said was the discovery that the Malta-based operator was still breaching Dutch law during a re-inspection in October 2023.

This time the regulator named yugibet.com as the offending website.

“An order subject to a penalty is more than a warning to an illegal provider. Illegal providers who do not take the right measures to ban Dutch players will be dealt with harshly by the KSA and will feel this where it affects them most, in their wallets,” said KSA chairman René Jansen.

In a statement issued to media following the most recent enforcement action, LCS said the penalty was “unlawful and unauthorised”.

The operator claimed it had taken action to “deny or impede access” to gamblers from the Netherlands and alleged that the KSA had used a virtual private network (VPN) and fake credentials to access its platform.

“We wish to make it explicitly clear that L.C.S Limited has not re-entered the Dutch market in any capacity. We dispute this unjustified recovery and remain fully committed to compliance and fairness in our operations,” the company said.

LCS said it had filed an objection to the fines and penalties.

On Tuesday (June 11), the KSA also announced it was collecting a penalty of €129,000 from Blue High House SA, a company based in Panama.

The regulator began enforcement proceedings against the operator in October 2023 and said it was now collecting the penalty fee because the offence was still occurring. 

The KSA said that the operator is offering illegal games of chance via its concreteline.ag website and that it could yet face a fine, much like how LCS faced a two-stage enforcement package.

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