The Dutch gaming authority Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) appears to be on the hunt for operators offering their services to players in the Netherlands. This time the KSA caught major brand LeoVegas in violation of the national ban on gambling.
Namely, the popular online gaming platform was accessible using Dutch IP addresses. And this, naturally, came to mean that all the services offered on the websites were also available to Dutch residents. Specifically, the provider offers a variety of online gaming services such as slots, sports betting, progressive jackpot games and bingo. Other types of gambling activities players could take part in include scratch cards and online casino games, for example.
As a result, LeoVegas Gaming received a fine of $385,000 for the illegal targeting of Dutch players. But it wasn’t the only entity to suffer the same fate.
In fact, Royal Panda, which is a LeoVegas subsidiary, was also subject to rather severe penalties from the Kansspelautoriteit. Under these same accusations, the smaller brand was set to pay the equivalent of $440,000.
As in the case with LeoVegas, Dutch IP addresses could readily access the website and make use of all the services on it. In addition, both gaming providers had also listed iDEAL as an acceptable banking method. And in turn, iDEAL is a payment system that is native to the Netherlands.
Further open violations appeared in the form of Royal Panda offering promotions specifically to Dutch players. This was also on top of the fact that the platform even had a loyalty program that further encouraged gameplay.
Why All These Repercussions All of a Sudden?
LeoVegas and Royal Panda have actually joined the ranks of a number of other online gaming operators to be served with fines lately. These two, specifically, were subject to monitoring by the Dutch watchdog from August 2018 to January 2019.
And it all has to do with the new gambling legislation that is set to come into force starting July next year. After this, the law will need to pass final approval the Dutch Ministry of Justice and Security. And only then, in the beginning of 2021, the Netherlands will officially have introduced a regulated market.
However, the Dutch gaming authorities are very particular about who will be able to receive licenses in their jurisdiction. And as it turns out, companies like LeoVegas will not be among the lucky ones. According to KSA, this applies for operators who’ve been active in the Netherlands within two years before the new law. Therefore, it’s already becoming clear which of the major players won’t be able to access the Dutch market henceforth.
And some of the names that KSA has slapped with hefty fines in the past few months are quite big. Among them, in fact, are giants like William Hill, Pokerstars.eu, Betsson and Mr. Green.
Hence, the total number of fines that the Dutch authority has issued last year alone has marked an all-time high. And the sum that they all amount to is well in excess of a staggering $1.8 million.