The UK’s Gambling Commission, responsible for regulating gambling activities, has imposed a £6 million ($7.6 million) financial penalty on Gamesys Operations Limited for breaching anti-money laundering (AML) and social responsibility rules. The Commission’s investigation uncovered these breaches, which occurred between November 2021 and July 2022. Gamesys must now ensure compliance with AML and safer gambling regulations and undergo a third-party audit to rectify these failings.

Kay Roberts, the Commission’s executive director, emphasized the importance of gambling operators offering safe and fair activities free from crime. She stated that whenever failures in policies and procedures are found, significant regulatory action can be expected.

The Commission described how some customers were able to bypass Gamesys’ AML triggers, enabling them to spend large amounts of money without proper AML checks. Additionally, the operator conducted inadequate customer due diligence and was over-reliant on third-party information or verbal assurances from customers.

On the social responsibility front, the Commission pointed out that Gamesys failed to identify customers at risk of gambling harm and did not interact sufficiently with those experiencing such harm. One customer lost nearly £10,000 ($12,700), but the operator’s responsible gambling interaction involved recommending promotions and new games, rather than addressing the customer’s potential gambling harm.

The hefty financial penalty imposed on Gamesys serves as a reminder that the Gambling Commission is committed to ensuring that gambling licensees comply with established rules. The Commission’s ongoing focus is on promoting safe and fair gambling activities free from crime and ensuring that operators fulfill their obligations to prevent gambling-related harm.

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