Over illegal advertising. Hands down maximum fine and legal costs. Australian betting operator Tabcorp has been fighting its corner this week with news of CrownBet’s deal with NSW Club’s and a hefty fine handed down by an Australian court for publishing advertising in contravention of New South Wales’ Betting and Racing Regulation 2012.
Despite disputing that it had illegally induced customers to sign up for a betting account by offering bonus bets through three promotions published online and in The Daily Mail newspaper back in August 2015, Sydney Downing Centre Local Court Magistrate Susan McIntyre, fined TabCorp A$5,500 per instance, the maximum penalty allowable, and ordered the company pay A$100,000 in legal costs
In her ruling, McIntyre said it was “crystal clear” that each of the ads were in breach of regulations aimed at protecting problem gamblers and would-be problem online gamblers from engaging in further gambling activity, The Australian reported.
With regard to the NSW Club’s deal with CrownBet, TabCorp chief executive David Attenborough hit back with a letter sent to “hundreds” of NSW Club executives, insisting that the TAB “is the sole wagering provider that is entitled to provide gambling services (including digital wagering) off course in NSW, by virtue of its wagering license and New South Wales wagering legislation”.
According to The Daily Telegraph, the letter goes on to urge NSW Club executives to “evaluate the CrownBet proposal in light of the legal risks as well as Tabcorp’s commercial offering”. Tabcorp holds a 20-year exclusivity agreement with the clubs and pubs, which was signed in 2013 at a hefty price tag of A$75 million.
NSW Gaming and Racing Minister Paul Toole’s office, in response to the furor, told The Daily Telegraph it will examine the deal and ensure it is consistent with the relevant regulatory requirements.
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