Two online gaming companies will pay a total of £2.8 million for anti-money laundering (AML) compliance lapses, the UK Gambling Commission has announced.
The penalties imposed on Osaka-based Platinum Gaming Ltd and London-based Gamesys come just a month after another four online gaming companies were ordered to pay a total of £4.5M for failing to implement adequate controls to both prevent money laundering and protect their customers from harmful gambling.
In ordering Platinum to pay £1.6M, the Gambling Commission said that the gaming company breached anti-money laundering rules by allowing a person convicted of fraud to bet almost £630,000 without any checks being made on him or the source of his money – even though Platinum had previously deemed him high risk and filed a suspicious activity report (SAR) about him.
Gamesys was made to pay £1.2M for failing to prevent three individuals from gambling with stolen money between 2014 and 2016. It failed to verify its clients’ identities and make checks on the source of their funds.
In the past 18 months, some of gambling’s biggest names and a succession of gaming companies have been penalised for inadequate money laundering controls.
Many in the gambling industry need to take a close look at the way they function and their vulnerability to those looking to launder money.
Gambling providers have a duty under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 to report any knowledge or suspicion of money laundering. No one with an interest in the running of a gambling provider can afford to be ignorant or cut corners when it comes to money laundering prevention.