All British Casino Source of Wealth Issue

colinsunderland

Experienced Member
webmeister
MM
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Location
uk
FWIW a while back I had the opportunity to sit down with a senior guy from very highly respected casino that had been called up by the UKGC and was facing a stiff fine. We talked just after the process had been completed and the UKGC was about to announce the fine.

My guy said the process was very one-sided. The UKGC said they were guilty of X, called for supporting documents and called a meeting to "discuss" the matter. The casino people were told what the fine would be and were asked if they would be appealing the decision with a quiet mention that the fine would be considerably higher if they did. His word to me was "you take it and you keep your mouth shut because fighting it is a no-win scenario". I suspect his wasn't the only casino to find themselves in that situation.

We discussed the case in some detail and the basic situation was that that his casino was guilty of what would have normally been considered a relatively minor lapse. It's something we've seen 100s of times before. IMO -- I repeat, IMO -- it was a relatively small issue with weak evidence, something that arguably could have been dealt by sending a formal memo regarding the need to henceforth tighten up on a KYC procedural issue.
I totally get that. What I was meaning was, if say 20 casinos from Malta got together and each contributed say £10k each to a legal fund, that would be more than enough to get a legal motion heard in the high court, using a UK legal team.

Giving casinos multi million pound penalties for breaching the rules, when the rules are unclear and left to the casino discretion on how to implement them, is likely, in my opinion, to be found an unfair term.

Casinos totally differ in their approach to Sow AML/RG checks.

The likes of Hills, Bet365, Entain, Flutter etc rarely send them and, and when they do, they are sensible and not too intrusive.

Compare that to Malta based casinos who send them out when people have made a few hundred £'s deposits, and do ridiculous things as we see here. Wanting proof from an insurance company that a couple of grand payout, which is listed on the bank statement, has came from them. Your mate lent you £20 2 months ago, they ask for his bank statements to prove where those funds came from. I could understand if it was £50k, but £20 and suchlike is ridiculous. The law is any transaction over £10k should be subject to an AML check. Not £20 transactions.

If they challenged the UKGC, if nothing else, to get an actual legal understanding of when and what needs doing, I'm sure it would pay dividends in future.
 
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Mr_Slot5

Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2019
Location
Cheshire
@colinsunderland very good post

I, as others have said on here, have my suspicions that this isn't really about AML at all but is affordability checking by stealth. Easier to justify the checks by stating it's to prevent crime rather than asking someone if they're too 'poor' to gamble. As others have said, laundering would stick out like a sore thumb surely. Plenty of red flags...low risk betting, turning deposits over once before withdrawing etc etc. Arbitrary limits are complete horse shit and are not how a risk assessment should be implemented. It's a shit show and I genuinely get riled with every case on here of people being pissed around because the casino wants unobtainable third party details. Odds are already stacked against the customer, without this brainless obstacle. There's nil common sense being utilised, hence the insurance payment situation above. What's even the point of a designated MLRO being employed when there's no independent thought or analysis being used to make a judgement of risk? Any person can blanket request, there is literally zero skill involved in that.


People have raised the issue of people stealing funds from employers etc but a) I simply cannot imagine this to be rife and b) this would fall under affordability checking. If people declare their pay as their source of income, one check of the payslip would reveal all.

The oversight the UKGC have made is that by allowing casinos the ability to state an AML check, they also have the ability to piss people around with withdrawals; generally stalling payments and giving people the run around...often asking for sensitive 3rd party information as you say. It's totally and utterly unacceptable for someone to be waiting weeks for a cash out when the very same casino accepted the initial deposit with no questions asked.

The whole thing needs addressing urgently. If the UKGC want people income checked for affordability then they should just come out and say so. If the UKGC really are as altruistic and caring towards the player as they espouse to be then they would sort this whole sorry mess out. It has to be one of the most egregious implementations of a piece of legislation I've ever seen quite frankly.
 

maxd

Complaints (PAB) Manager
Staff member
Joined
Jan 20, 2004
Location
Saltirelandia
Compare that to Malta based casinos who send them out when people have made a few hundred £'s deposits, and do ridiculous things as we see here. Wanting proof from an insurance company that a couple of grand payout, which is listed on the bank statement, has came from them. Your mate lent you £20 2 months ago, they ask for his bank statements to prove where those funds came from. I could understand if it was £50k, but £20 and suchlike is ridiculous. The law is any transaction over £10k should be subject to an AML check. Not £20 transactions.
Call me a sceptic but when I hear stories like that I can't help but think of the early days of the DPA (Data Protection Act), or the GDPR for that matter. Any company that can bend the system to their advantage under the guise of "the law" will likely do so until enough of their peers get bitch-slapped back into line to convince them that it's actually not worth doing. And AFAIK Malta is not known for being particularly pro-active in such matters.

I seriously doubt that onerous SOW is justified in more than a few small percent of cases. But if player money is tied up and out of play while such SOW is being done then I think a blind man can see why it happens so often and to such an extent.
 

Mr_Slot5

Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2019
Location
Cheshire
People vote in a right-wing authoritarian party and are then shocked that the political appointments and decisions are right-wing authoritarian.

Vote Tory, get Tory policies. Then remember to blame the left/foreigners/the sky/the cancellation of your favourite TV series/a snail for everything that the Tories choose to do and then remember to vote for them again.
I don’t see how this is in any way political in the sense you’re making out? I thought labour were more anti gambling than anyone?
 

Mr_Slot5

Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2019
Location
Cheshire
I seriously doubt that onerous SOW is justified in more than a few small percent of cases. But if player money is tied up and out of play while such SOW is being done then I think a blind man can see why it happens so often and to such an extent.
You hit the nail on the head.
 

danofthewibble

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2018
Location
UK
I don’t see how this is in any way political in the sense you’re making out? I thought labour were more anti gambling than anyone?

It depends on who you believe really; it was because of Labour that we had relatively lax online gambling laws. They've only really got particularly tight in the last five years or so, and the Tories have been in power for the last twelve. Ultimately, these political appointments/commissions will always be coloured by the majority party.
 

ergosum

Full Member
Joined
Sep 14, 2014
Location
United Kingdom
I've just had a SOW request from Allbritish. I've had them from 3 other casinos and at that point stopped playing at all of them, because I refuse to allow a casino access to my bank statements, I consider it is a massive invasion of privacy, we jump through hoops to provide identification to get verified, then we have this BS. After reading the stories about nit-picking every transaction it just makes me more resolute that I have neither the time or inclination to do this. I'm not a criminal, i'm not laundering money, I like to play on the casinos. Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose, for the most part its fun. Until they decide they want to look at my finances under a microscope. The only difference between the others and Allbritish, none of them had a pending withdrawal, this one does. If I tell them I refuse to provide a SOW and want to close my account will the withdrawal be processed? has anyone been in the same situation with them?
 

Oscar Arnhem

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2017
Location
arnhem
I've just had a SOW request from Allbritish. I've had them from 3 other casinos and at that point stopped playing at all of them, because I refuse to allow a casino access to my bank statements, I consider it is a massive invasion of privacy, we jump through hoops to provide identification to get verified, then we have this BS. After reading the stories about nit-picking every transaction it just makes me more resolute that I have neither the time or inclination to do this. I'm not a criminal, i'm not laundering money, I like to play on the casinos. Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose, for the most part its fun. Until they decide they want to look at my finances under a microscope. The only difference between the others and Allbritish, none of them had a pending withdrawal, this one does. If I tell them I refuse to provide a SOW and want to close my account will the withdrawal be processed? has anyone been in the same situation with them?
maybe @L&L-Jan can help.
 

L&L-Jan

Affiliate Manager for Accredited Casinos
Joined
Jun 15, 2013
Location
Malta
As for OP, he is verified the next day and provided all docs as requested accordingly.

@ergosum please PM username and I'll help where I can. But the assumption that a bank statement is required is a bit silly. It simply works like this: You submit a form that we provide you, you inform us where you got your funds from you have spend and provide additional proof. E.g. a payslip. If the spend is higher as the provided proof, additional docs can be requested.
 

danofthewibble

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2018
Location
UK
As for OP, he is verified the next day and provided all docs as requested accordingly.

@ergosum please PM username and I'll help where I can. But the assumption that a bank statement is required is a bit silly. It simply works like this: You submit a form that we provide you, you inform us where you got your funds from you have spend and provide additional proof. E.g. a payslip. If the spend is higher as the provided proof, additional docs can be requested.

I ….think I had an SOW from L&L a few months ago, thinking about it. It was much simpler than some places - effectively a quick A4 form. Can’t remember if they needed any other docs.
 
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