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Global gambling legislation news – week ending August 18

Legislation gambling
End your week on a high note with our weekly column which looks at gambling news all around the world. Laws are constantly changing and although it can be a struggle to keep up with new reforms which may impact you our column makes things easy and accessible. Scroll down to find out what’s happening this week.

If you have any information on gambling changes near you, send it to [email protected] or leave a comment at the bottom of the page.

This week an Australian gambling company has made a bold move and entered the US wagering scene. In Sweden, an online gambling debate is still going as the country considers implementing a liberalised licensing system. And in Australia, gambling operators are leaving the market due to the new reforms. More below.

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Australian gambling reforms enforced

The Interactive Gambling Amendment Bill 2016 received Assent this week and will be enforced in 28 days from August 16. As a result, reputable online gambling operators are preparing to exit the Australian market. PokerStars announced it would be exiting in mid-September via email, while Karamba casino also emailed its customers to inform them that it would no longer be accepting Australians from August 15.

The Australian Crown Resorts saga involving the 19 employees and associates has come to an end. Jason O’Connor, the last Australian serving his sentence in a Shanghai prison, was released over the weekend. Only 11 of the 19 received jailed time with the majority released last month.

The media has gone crazy for a story regarding Donald Trump, an Australian casino, and the mafia. The US President reportedly planned to build a casino in New South Wales, until the state government rejected proposals due to his “mafia connections”.

The US gets access to the Global Tote

The North Dakota Racing Commission granted an Advance-Deposit Wagering (ADW) licence to the Australian betting site, TopBetta this week. Under the licensing agreement, US operators can tap into international pools via the Global Tote product, while TopBetta can provide pari-mutuel betting to US punters living in the 35 US states where ADW gambling is permitted.

The Pennsylvanian online gambling bill will finally be considered when the Senate returns in September. The state wants to legalise online gambling and daily fantasy sports to fill a gap in their budget, but progress has been delayed due to the inclusion of video gaming terminals. According to reports, the Senate Law and Justice Committee will address the issues on September 19.

Illinois could beat Pennsylvania to the punch with the state set to enforce a bill legalising online gambling. Although the Senate has already passed the bill, it is yet to come into effect. The inclusion of daily fantasy sports has delayed its progress since legislators aren’t sure of the game’s legal status.

The American Gaming Association (AGA) has publicly announced that it believes there will be no detrimental impact on Nevada gambling services if sports betting is legalised in the US. The AGA believes a legalised industry will stamp out criminal activity, such as match fixing.

Japan remains firm on gambling age

Sports betting and poker may not be available at Japanese casinos if the government follows the Expert Committee’s recommendations. According to Japanese news outlets, the Committee recommends that casinos should only offer traditional luck-based games such as blackjack, roulette, baccarat and sic bo. However, some members of the committee want poker included due to the international appeal.
Meanwhile, the National Diet is considering lowering the minimum age of adulthood to 18. But insiders have revealed lawmakers want the minimum age to gamble at land-based casinos set at 20.

Turkish police arrest gambling ringleader

Turkish police have detained an illegal gambling ring leader, Veysel Sahin. Authorities announced that Sahin was arrested last month while visiting his father in Sivas. The illegal gambling syndicate was busted over 12 months ago but Sahin managed to avoid arrest. Several websites were shut down and £6 million in cash and other assets were seized. The police also detained 25 other men linked to the illegal syndicate.

Ireland to get Daily Fantasy Sports

US daily fantasy sports (DFS) operator, DraftKings, is looking to expand. The DFS company also operates the UK and it is reportedly looking to set up shop in Ireland. Chief International Officer, Jeffery Haas, has revealed the company will roll out its services in Ireland later this year. Haas told Irish news outlets that DraftKings had open discussions with the Irish Department of Finance regarding the “skill game,” and how it should be taxed.

Swedish online gambling review

A review of the Swedish gambling industry was published earlier this year but it is still causing controversy. The country’s legislature, Riksdag, is required to create a legislative framework for the industry, with legislation dependant on the review. The review recommended the replacement of state-owned gambling company, Svenska Spel. The review suggests a liberal licensing system over the current one, which would strip the company of its monopoly over online gambling sites. Svenska Spel has caused a stir after it released recommendations of its own via Swedish news outlets.

UK casino fights more players for winnings

Genting Casino is reportedly investigating a group of people who won £200,000 playing Punto Banco over a four-month period. The casino company is currently awaiting the U.K. Supreme Court decision over whether or not Phil Ivey won his baccarat winnings by cheating. The details of the most recent case are quite vague but it could indicate the outcome of Ivey’s appeal.

Analysts from Credit Suisse have pointed out that the government will likely reduce the maximum stake for gaming machines to £2. The analysts believe bookmakers will take a 40-50 percent cut in profits if the changes are enforced. There were rumours the British Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, blocked attempts to reduce the maximum betting stake but it was later classed as ‘fake news’.

Dutch gambling regulator issues cease and desist order

Kansspelautoriteit, the Dutch gambling regulator, has issued a cease and desist order to the Malta-based company, Catena Media. The regulator claims the company has breached the Netherlands’ gaming regulations through the promotion of online gambling brands. The Netherlands Gaming Authority Informed Catena Media that it would face a fine of up to €21,000 if it failed to comply.