Dutch Get Tough on Online Illegal Advertisers

Dutch Secretary of State for Justice Fred Teeven: ‘I cannot inform you given that organizations will never be granted a license, however they are playing with fire.’ (Image: ANP)

The country’s Secretary of State for Justice, Fred Teeven, has made it very clear that operators currently targeting the Dutch market illegally are unwelcome while the Dutch may well open up their online gambling market next year. In fact, in response to concerns in the Dutch Parliament about the total amount of online sports betting advertising directed at Dutch residents within the run up to the World Cup, Teeven warned that such sites had been ‘playing with fire.’

While Holland may have a liberal and socially progressive attitude towards soft drugs like marijuana, and prostitution, the same cannot be traditionally said of online gambling. There are no legal online video gaming sites in the united states, and the federal government holds a complete monopoly on gambling. The country’s only casino that is land-based, Holland Casino, which operates 13 venues around the country, is wholly owned by the state, with all profits visiting the Treasury.

Breaking the Law

But, movements are afoot to alter this. Last 12 months, the Dutch Remote Gambling Act had been drawn up and passed by an initial round of lawmakers in February. The bill is anticipated to be rubber-stamped later this and should come into force midway through next year year. Experts predict that a regulated environment that is online bring in €200 million in gross gaming revenue in its first year.

Teeven has made it clear, however, that overseas operators are breaking Dutch law by targeting the Dutch market. With echoes regarding the current ‘cease and desist’ letters delivered by nj-new Jersey regulators to online gambling advertisers, the Dutch gambling regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) recently penned to certain operators who have been noisily advertising World Cup betting to Dutch citizens, warning them they continue to do so that they face sanctions should.

The question was posed in the House of Representatives by Mei Li Vos who asked: ‘If companies advertise, do they conform to the law or not? And does this mean that Unibet and other big events will perhaps not get a license after the law that is new been approved?’

Teeven said that the KSA mostly targets businesses whom use such news as radio, TV, and web sites ending in .nl, and those that have Dutch language options, in its fight against illegal advertising, although he would not be drawn into mentioning any ongoing companies by name.

Bad Actors Frozen Out?

‘So far, things have gone very well and merely a few companies were active into the Dutch market. However, this is changing,’ said Teeven. ‘Companies which do so are playing with fire in regards to licensing once the remote gaming law is implemented. Obviously, the KSA is in cost of licensing. We must however take into account the Bouwmeester Motion.’

The Bouwmeester Motion is the exact carbon copy of the ‘bad actor clause’ which is adopted by newly controlled states in the US, such as New Jersey and Nevada, and is element of the proposed bill to legalize poker that is online California. Established in 2011, it stipulates that illegal gambling operators offering bets to Dutch citizens must certanly be excluded from a future regulated market. This list would include industry giants such as PokerStars (although the latter’s recent buyout by Amaya Gaming should be a game changer in that arena) as is the case in the United States.

However, Teeven declined to say definitively whether such operators would be frozen out forever: ‘I cannot tell you now that companies will never be granted a permit, nonetheless they are playing with fire,’ he repeated. ‘It could be against all agreements we now have reached in days gone by.’

US Casinos Must Refuse Bets from Medical Marijuana Profits

All bets are down: Medical marijuana workers can be refused bets at gambling enterprises across the usa, on pain of prosecution, state federal regulators. (Image:

America’s casinos must refrain from accepting bets from workers in the medical marijuana industry, a small grouping of federal regulators told gaming executives at the 2014 Bank Secrecy Act Conference in Las vegas, nevada recently. Just as the clash between federal and individual state legislation has hindered the processing of online gaming transactions in the newly regulated states, the federal stance on marijuana means that the federal government will not let the casino industry to address the proceeds of cannabis sales. How casinos are to exactly determine that, is plainly likely to be problematic all around.

Former White House consultant on money laundering issues Jim Dowling, who’s now a consultant to casinos, told executives: ‘Casinos can not accept any money they have to comply with the new government guidance from them, or. This will be a federal problem that has been brewing for sometime, and now it is coming to a head. State regulations and laws that are federaln’t match up.’

Should a casino knowingly accept a bet from a person working in the medical cannabis industry, they could face prosecution, unless they perform a number of time-consuming, high priced, and frankly unrealistic background checks, Dowling explained. In this respect, casinos are being told to look at a similar relationship mindset towards the medical marijuana industry as the banks, which have essentially blacklisted anyone in that company from opening a checking or savings account.

No Pot Luck Allowed

Dowling said he wanted to boost the problem at the conference in las vegas to make sure that casinos were alert to the brand new guidelines so that they could avoid any risk of prosecution.

‘It’s very controversial. We’ll probably obtain a lot of hate mail for bringing it,’ he said. ‘But if you put your self in a banker’s situation, can you want to do all that and put your self at criminal risk?

‘ Bankers are all just saying, ‘We don’t want those nagging problems,’ ‘ said Dowling, who is also a banking consultant. ‘One banker called them toxic.’

There were protests from civil liberty groups over the government that is federal stance they claim that workers are increasingly being treated like pariahs and denied basic rights.

‘ The government that is federal once again saying individuals involved into the cannabis company do not have liberties,’ complained Dale Gieringer, director of California marijuana advocacy group NORML.

Pot Control

Meanwhile, Jennifer Shasky Calvery, Director of FinCEN, the branch of the Treasury which regulates gambling enterprises and banks, was also present at the seminar. She referred concerns to her media spokesman, Stephen Hudak, who appeared to confirm Dowling’s assertion.

‘FinCEN’s guidance applies to all or any monetary institutions covered under FinCEN regulations, including casinos,’ said Hudak.

Calvery additionally desires to enforce laws more rigorously that will require casinos getting their high-rollers to divulge the supply of their bankrolls, an unpopular move with the casinos. She called casinos ‘complex finance institutions’ that have to get accustomed to ‘thinking a lot more like other finance institutions.’

The Nevada Gaming Control Board recently ruled that none of its license holders should have anything doing utilizing the state’s legalization of the marijuana trade that is medical. Marijuana has been appropriate for medicinal purposes in Nevada since 2000, but in 2013 the statutory law changed allowing businesses to dispense the medication, providing the go-ahead for 66 outlets throughout hawaii.

Pennsylvania Sands Penalized for Underage Gambling

The Sands Bethlehem in Pennsylvania has been fined for allowing minors to gamble every year since it opened while Sheldon Adelson is fond of scaremongering rhetoric about underage gambling online. (Image:

While Sheldon Adelson rails against the evils of online gambling, stoking fears that it will irreversibly corrupt America’s youth, one of his casinos, the Sands Bethlehem in Pennsylvania, is fined for enabling teenagers to gamble and digest alcohol on its premises for the 5th time in as many years.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control slapped an $85,000 penalty on Sands Bethworks Gaming for six incidents of underage gambling between June 3rd 2013 and January 29th 2014 at the Sands Casino Bethlehem in Northampton County. Two 17-year-olds, a 19-year-old, and three 20-year-olds was indeed seen playing table games or slot machines at the casino in this period. The total is brought by it to 20 individual incidents of underage gambling over the previous five years, which has cost vegas Sand Corp. some $220,000 in fines.

Not Walking the Talk

While this means that the Sands Bethlehem has been penalized every 12 months as it opened in 2009, it should be noted it’s perhaps not the sole casino into the state to fall foul for the authorities in Pennsylvania. Mount Airy Casino in Paradise Township has paid also higher fines within the past, and recently Valley Forge Casino Resort in Montgomery County was handed a $35,000 fine for two incidents that occurred last year, the second time Valley Forge is penalized for underage gambling violations.

Ironically, Adelson’s Coalition to avoid Internet Gambling (CSIG) is fond of utilizing rhetoric to claim that online casinos prey on underage gamblers, ignoring the fact that regulation means greater protection and brings with it rigorous age-verification processes. CSIG recently created a video clip spot showing a teenage boy playing on his father’s gambling account, as the Coalition steps up its campaign to push by way of a federal bill that would enforce a blanket ban on Internet gaming.

‘I believe the recent $32.5 million settlement by Apple over in-app acquisitions made by kids on their parents’ iPads/iPhones is simply the tip of the iceberg if online gambling continues to grow,’ said Coalition National Co-Chair and Senator that is former Blanche at the advertisement’s launch.

‘then think of what can happen when they get hold of their parent’s password and start playing blackjack if kids can blow $2,600 in the app ‘Tap Pet Hotel? It’s a nightmare scenario for moms and dads.’

Hysteria and Hypocrisy

The incident at the Sands Bethlehem features the hypocrisy that many feel lies beneath the hysteria at the heart of the Coalition’s argument. Adelson suffered an additional blow to his cause recently when his closest ally in Washington, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, had been defeated in Virginia’s Republican primary. Cantor will now stand down, which means the Coalition has lost a powerful backer, and that could hinder its efforts to promote the federal bill.

Meanwhile, Pennsylvania is evaluating a bill of its, backed by State Senator Edwin Erickson, that, if passed would, legalize and control online poker in the state. It comes down hot on the heels of a study that is recent commissioned by the state’s Legislative Budget and Finance Committee and conducted by consultancy firm Econsult, which concluded internet poker would be a huge financial boon to Pennsylvania, creating $129 million in revenue each year.