The UK Gambling Commission has imposed a payment fine against a popular company, Greentube Alderney for money laundering violations and lack of social responsibility. In the United Kingdom, NOVOMATIC company has five license types and also runs some of the popular casinos like Bell Fruit Casino and Admiral casino.
The Commission began investigations on the operator in December 2020 and discovered that the company did not perform in full compliance with its license requirements in four distinct and separate ways. This was between December 2019 and November 2020.
A £685,000 regulatory settlement was levied for the following infringements of responsibility:
Failure to uptake risk assessments for money laundering
Failure to detect and prevent money laundering
Failure to report major events
Failure to engage with customers in a way that reduces the possibility of customers being harmed.
While Greentube acknowledged the Risk Assessment presented by the UK Commission, it did not specifically affirm that it would maintain documentary evidence of the steps it had already taken to mitigate risk “identify and assess the risks of money laundering to which its business is subject as required”.
Greentube also failed to mention clearly that adequate actions would be taken to evaluate and minimize new risks that may arise as a result of the adoption of new technologies, business models, or product developments, “consideration had been given to the low-risk factors outlined in the Commission’s guidance.”
Greentube did admit that out-of-hours activities tracking money laundering risks had not been adequately addressed by the policies.
It also admitted that the company's practices during the timeframe unfairly relied on an analysis that slot games were a lesser risky product and that internal systems allowed some gamers to deposit and lose "significant sums" before Source of Funds requests were triggered.
Greetube admitted that record-keeping during the evaluation period was lacking and that it was not always able to explain audit logs to back up decision making.
Other findings and admissions involve employees failing to question customers about their source of revenue/funds, and unacceptable delays in capturing ownership of payment methods.
In terms of key event reporting, Greentube filed six unusual activity reports with the National Crime Agency but failed to notify the Commission within five days of doing so.
In terms of social responsibility violations, Greentube admitted that they sometimes relied on monthly loss limit triggers instead of customer interactions to establish if harmful betting was taking place at its properties.
Additional indicators, such as gambling length, frequency, and time of day, were not always relied on to inform the company's decision-making.
In addition to the payment in lieu of a financial penalty, Greentube accepted to publish a factual statement regarding the case, allow third-party regular audits compliance, and compensate the Commission £8,789.86 toward investigation costs.
Helen Vann, Executive Director oh her part: “Compliance with Commission rules aimed at keeping people safe and gambling crime-free is not optional.
“We will always take firm action against those operators who fail to meet the high standards we expect for consumers in Britain.”