Spelinspektionen appeals unjustified Casino Cosmopol penalty reduction

The Spelinspektionen is appealing an Administrative Court judgement that saw a penalty package previously issued to Casino Cosmopol be reduced from SEK 8m (£638,680) to SEK 3m (£239,505).

Stressing that it “does not consider that the reduction is justified,” the Swedish regulator also commented that it is “not clear from the judgement of the Administrative Court why the court chose to reduce the penalty fee”.

Appealing to the Administrative Court of Appeal in Jönköping, the authority also express puzzlement at the Linköping court sharing its viewpoint that the company was guilty of serious and systematic violations of the regulations.

Sweden’s Administrative Court in Linköping reversed the decision earlier this month, following an initial ruling made by the country’s regulator last year.

The land-based subsidiary of state-owned Svenska Spel, whose portfolio stretches to the cities of Sundsvall, Malmö, Gothenburg and Stockholm, received the penalty fee for what the Spelinspektionen stressed as violations in its efforts to combat money laundering.

In its original decision it was stated that a review “shows that Casino Cosmopol is lacking in its efforts to counter money laundering and terrorist financing in all audited areas. The shortcomings are serious and in many cases of a systematic nature”.

Among the significant areas of concern highlighted were risk-based routines, business relations and customer awareness measures, obligation to deny transactions and keeping accurate documentation.

Announcing its decision to appeal the decision a short time after receiving the sanction, the Administrative Court has subsequently lowered the penalty fee to SEK 3m.

In a media release detailing the reduction it was stated: “The Administrative Court has essentially accepted the deficiencies identified by the Spelinspektionen and considered that there is reason to decide that the company should pay a penalty fee. 

“However, based on an assessment of the nature, nature and extent of the violations, the administrative court has reduced the penalty fee to SEK 3m.”