UKGC Taking Action Against Caesars Casino Employees
After a fine was issued to Caesars Entertainment last year by the UKGC, the regulator has now decided to act on casino employees.
It has been a year since the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) fined £13 million for license failings. Now, the regulator has decided it is time to go after the Personal Management License holders who worked with the operator. The employees now face consequences for being associated with the brand.
Details of the Action
The UKGC issues Personal Management Licenses to people who are working in management positions in with gambling operators who are licensed in the UK. These individuals are in charge of the operations of the company along with marketing, financial planning, and a host of other duties, including IT and security.
Back in April of last year, the UKGC fined Caesars the huge amount due to customer interaction failures along with social responsibility issues, and money laundering in the UK. The violations took place from January 2016 to December 2018.
Based on the terms of licensing, the UK companies must provide social responsibility services to consumers. They need to interact with those who display any signs of a gambling problem. This could be playing more than normal or spending more than usual.
The companies are also supposed to conduct fund checks to prevent money laundering via customers. This also helps to avoid other types of financial crimes that are common to the gambling industry. In all of these areas, the operator failed.
In one instance, Caesars did not interact with a player who showed signs of a gambling addiction. This individual played for a year period and gambling £323,000. Another time, a player was allowed to spend almost £3.5 million in just three months’ time.
Reviewing PML Individuals
After the investigation into Caesars was completed, the Gambling Commission began reviewing the PML holders. The Commission was concerned that the license holders might not have taken all the steps needed to ensure they were in full compliance of the gambling regulations within the UK.
The regulator issued a statement this week on its website stating that due to the investigation, seven PML holders were given warnings. Two were provided letters on advice for conduct while three have surrendered their licensing after being told they were under review. One more PML holder decided to surrender the license while under investigation but before they knew the license was under review.
Even more PML individuals were affected by this review. One lost its license due to unpaid license fees. Around 18 more were sent a letter on advice of conduct, but this was outside the scope of the investigation.
Richard Watson, the Executive Director for the UKGC, said that the PML holders need to be aware that they will be held accountable when appropriate for any regulatory failings connected to the operators they manage.
The announcement comes as the UK is currently undergoing major reviews of its gambling policies and regulations. There are critics of the Gambling Act of 2005 that feel gambling in the region is detrimental to the well-being of its citizens.
The review just appointed a new head, MP John Whittingdale. The probe just started late last year by the UK Department of Digital, Culture, Media, and Sports. Mr. Whittingdale is a member of the department and has shown support for the gambling industry in the past.
Many are critical of the decision on the new head of the review, as they feel that Mr. Whittingdale will not be bias as he has shown support for gambling in the past. However, there are no signs that he will not review the act carefully and make an unbiased opinion. We shall see in the coming weeks what becomes of the review as well as any additional changes to the gambling landscape in the UK.