Dutch Secretary of State for Justice Fred Teeven: ‘we cannot tell you given that organizations will never be provided a permit, however they are playing with fire.’ (Image: ANP)
While the Dutch may well start their online gambling market next year, the nation’s Secretary of State for Justice, Fred Teeven, has managed to make it specific that operators currently targeting the Dutch market illegally are unwelcome. In reality, in reaction to questions in the Dutch Parliament about the quantity of online sports wagering advertising directed at Dutch residents within the run up to your World Cup, Teeven warned that such sites had been ‘playing with fire.’
The same cannot be traditionally said of online gambling while Holland may have a liberal and socially progressive attitude towards soft drugs like marijuana, and prostitution. There are no legal Internet gaming sites in the united states, and the us government holds a complete monopoly on gambling. The nation’s only land-based casino chain, Holland Casino, which operates 13 venues round the country, is wholly owned by the state, with all profits going to the Treasury.
Breaking the Law
Nonetheless, movements are afoot to change this. Last 12 months, the Dutch Remote Gambling Act was drawn up and passed by an initial round of lawmakers in February. The bill is expected to be rubber-stamped later on this year and may come into force midway through next year. Experts predict that the regulated online environment would bring in €200 million in gross video gaming revenue in its lightning link slot machine online first year.
Teeven has made it clear, however, that overseas operators are breaking Dutch law by targeting the Dutch market. With echoes for the current ‘cease and desist’ letters delivered by nj-new Jersey regulators to online gambling advertisers, the Dutch gambling regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) recently published to certain operators who possess been noisily advertising World Cup betting to Dutch citizens, warning them that they face sanctions should they continue to do so.
The question was posed in the House of Representatives by Mei Li Vos who asked: ‘If companies advertise, do they conform to what the law states or not? And does this imply that Unibet and other big parties will perhaps not get a license when the new law has been approved?’
Teeven said that the KSA mostly targets companies who use such media as radio, TV, and internet 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 organizations by name.
Bad Actors Frozen Out?
‘So far, things have gone very well and merely a few organizations were active within the market that is dutch. However, this is changing,’ said Teeven. ‘Companies which do so can be playing with fire as it pertains to licensing once the remote gaming law is implemented. Obviously, the KSA is in charge 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 has been adopted by newly regulated states into the US, such as New Jersey and Nevada, and is part of the proposed bill to legalize on-line poker in California. Founded last year, it stipulates that illegal gambling operators that provide wagers to Dutch citizens must be excluded from a future market that is regulated. As is the situation in the usa, this list would include industry giants such as PokerStars (even though latter’s present buyout by Amaya Gaming ought to be a game changer in that arena).
However, Teeven refused to say definitively whether such operators would be frozen out forever: ‘I cannot tell you now that companies will never be granted a license, but they are playing with fire,’ he repeated. ‘It would be against all agreements we have reached in the past.’
US Casinos Must Refuse Bets from Medical Marijuana Proceeds
All bets are off: Medical marijuana workers are to be refused bets at gambling enterprises across the united states, on pain of prosecution, state federal regulators. (Image: ukcsc.co.uk)
America’s casinos must refrain from accepting bets from workers within the medical marijuana industry, a small grouping of federal regulators told gaming executives at the 2014 Bank Secrecy Act Conference in nevada recently. Just as the clash between federal and state that is individual has hindered the processing of online video gaming transactions into the newly regulated states, the federal stance on cannabis means that the US government will not let the casino industry to deal with the proceeds of marijuana sales. Just How casinos are to determine that exactly, is demonstrably planning to be problematic all around.
Former White House consultant on money laundering issues Jim Dowling, that is now a consultant to casinos, told executives: ‘Casinos can’t accept any money they have to comply with the new government guidance from them, or. This might be a federal problem that has been brewing for sometime, and now it’s coming up to a head. State rules and laws that are federaln’t match up.’
Should a casino knowingly accept a bet from a person working in the medical marijuana industry, they could face prosecution, unless they perform a few time-consuming, costly, and frankly unrealistic background checks, Dowling explained. In this regard, casinos are being told to adopt a relationship that is similar towards the medical marijuana industry as the banks, that have essentially blacklisted anybody in that business from starting a checking or savings account.
No Pot Luck Allowed
Dowling said he desired to raise the matter during the conference in las vegas to make sure that casinos were aware of the new guidelines therefore that they could avoid any risk of prosecution.
‘It’s really controversial. I’ll probably obtain a large amount of hate mail for bringing it,’ he stated. ‘But if you put your self in a banker’s situation, can you want to have to do all that and place your self at unlawful risk?
‘ Bankers are all just saying, ‘We don’t want those nagging problems,’ ‘ said Dowling, whom normally a banking consultant. ‘One banker called them toxic.’
There has been 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 federal government is once again saying individuals involved in the cannabis business don’t possess liberties,’ reported Dale Gieringer, director of California marijuana advocacy group NORML.
Meanwhile, Jennifer Shasky Calvery, Director of FinCEN, the branch of the Treasury which regulates gambling enterprises and banks, was also present at the meeting. She referred concerns to her news spokesman, Stephen Hudak, who appeared to verify Dowling’s assertion.
‘FinCEN’s guidance applies to any or all monetary organizations covered under FinCEN regulations, including casinos,’ said Hudak.
Calvery also wants to enforce laws more rigorously that could require casinos to get their high-rollers to divulge the source of their bankrolls, an unpopular move with the casinos. She called casinos ‘complex finance institutions’ that have to get accustomed to ‘thinking more like other banking institutions.’
The Nevada Gaming Control Board recently ruled that none of its license holders should have anything doing aided by the state’s legalization of the marijuana trade that is medical. Marijuana has been legal for medicinal purposes in Nevada since 2000, but in 2013 the statutory legislation changed to permit organizations to dispense the drug, giving 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: osga.com)
The Sands Bethlehem in Pennsylvania, has been fined for allowing teenagers to gamble and consume alcohol on its premises for the fifth time in as many years 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 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 during the Sands Casino Bethlehem in Northampton County. Two 17-year-olds, a 19-year-old, and three 20-year-olds had been seen table that is playing or slot devices at the casino with this period. The total is brought by it to 20 individual incidents of underage gambling over the previous five years, which has cost Las Vegas Sand Corp. some $220,000 in fines.
Not Walking the Talk
While this means that the Sands Bethlehem has been penalized every year it should be noted it’s not the only casino in the state to fall foul of the authorities in Pennsylvania since it opened in 2009. Mount Airy Casino in Paradise Township has paid even 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 final year, the second time Valley Forge is penalized for underage gambling violations.
Ironically, Adelson’s Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling (CSIG) is fond of using rhetoric to claim that online casinos prey on underage gamblers, ignoring the truth 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 their father’s gambling account, as the Coalition actions up its campaign to push via a bill that is federal would enforce a blanket ban on Web gaming.
‘I believe the recent $32.5 million settlement by Apple over in-app purchases made by kids on their parents’ iPads/iPhones is simply the tip of the iceberg if on the web gambling continues to grow,’ said Coalition National Co-Chair and former Senator Blanche Lincoln at the advertisement’s launch.
‘If children can blow $2,600 in the app ‘Tap Pet resort,’ then think of what can happen when they get hold of their parent’s password and start playing blackjack? This is a nightmare situation for parents.’
Hysteria and Hypocrisy
The incident at the Sands Bethlehem shows the hypocrisy that many feel lies beneath the hysteria at the heart of the Coalition’s argument. Adelson suffered a further blow to their cause recently when their closest ally in Washington, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, ended up being beaten in Virginia’s Republican primary. Cantor will now stand down, meaning the Coalition has lost a strong backer, and that could hinder its efforts to promote the federal bill.
Meanwhile, Pennsylvania is considering a bill of unique, backed by State Senator Edwin Erickson, that, if passed would, legalize and manage online poker in the state. It comes 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 considered a huge financial boon to Pennsylvania, producing $129 million in revenue each year.