Dutch regulator penalises pair of lotteries for illegal games offerings

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The National Postcode Lottery and Friends Lottery have become the latest entities to fall foul of the Dutch gambling authority, Kansspelautoriteit, with an order subject to periodic penalty payments subsequently imposed. 

This is due to each offering online games that are not permitted according to the lottery permits held. If this is not ceased immediately, both parties will pay a penalty of €250,000 per week up to a maximum of €1m.

The National Postcode Lottery offers the Games Lottery on its own website via the Deal or no Deal, Suitcase hunt, ONE against 50 and Move That Truck titles. 

Following an investigation, the Ksa determined that these represent online casino games that are not covered by the lottery licence possessed by the group.

Similarly, the VriendenLoterij offers a Games Lottery, where the FriendsLottery Millionaires, Club-man and Bingo Crush games can be played. These were also found to be online gaming titles that are not covered by the licence handed down.

“Legislation and regulations make a clear distinction between lotteries and more risky games of chance, including online games of chance,” the Ksa said.

“A different licence is required for both games of chance. Lotteries may not be offered online; it is only permitted to sell participation tickets (‘lots’) via the internet. 

“The – for example – online offering of games that are linked to a lottery is prohibited. The law does not allow this. The Ksa remains keen to ensure that lottery and online games of chance remain separate.”

Already this year, the Ksa has been on something of a regulatory rampage after issuing a slew of sanctions, which includes handing out penalties of €900,000 to Shark77, €400,000 to Joi Gaming, €350,000 to Bingoal and €900,000 each to Equinox Dynamic from Curaçao and Slovakia’s Domiseda and Partners.

Furthermore, a total of €26m in penalties was handed down to N1 Interactive (€12.64m), Videoslots (€9.87m), Betpoint Group (€1.78m), Probe Investments (€1.12m) and Fairload (€900,000), as part of a total package of €26m.

During March the Ksa also voiced an intention to collect a €4.41m penalty payment from Gammix after an appeal to the sanction was rejected, with Hillside New Media Malta, bet365’s Malta-based operating company, fined €400,000 and a fine of €675,000 fine issued to Red Ridge Marketing.

Most recently, a cease and desist order issued to Winning Poker Network, while Entain owned BetEnt was fined €400,000 for advertising violation and Merkur Casino Almere received a fine of €45,000.