Well-known online gambling operator Betfred has been hit with a big fine by the UK gambling regulator after failing to uphold its anti-money laundering responsibilities.
The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has ruled that Petfre Limited, which operates in the UK as Betfred, failed to instigate proper checks in a case where a customer used stolen money to make substantial bets on the Betfred platform, back in November 2017.
According to the UKGC, the customer in question used stolen funds to place bets with a number of online casino and sports betting companies, including Betfred, who are said to have accepted a deposit of £210,000 from the individual, who lost a total of £140,000 over 12 days of gambling. The customer was subsequently found guilty of fraud totalling £2 million.
The ruling of the UK regulator found that Betfred had failed to conduct adequate checks on the source of the funds deposited, and that their failure to do so raised significant concerns about the effectiveness of the company’s policies in the area of anti-money laundering and risk management.
The company has been served with a fine of £322,000 in total, with £140,000 being returned to the original victim of the crime, and £182,000 going towards the UKGC’s program to tackle the social harm caused by problem gambling in the UK.
The UKGC also said that it was confident that the operator had improved its policies and procedures since the incident came to light, but the ruling represents the latest enforcement action by the regulator as it seeks to tighten up the way that UK operators manage the risk of money laundering and wider social harm, against a backdrop of increased political and media scrutiny.