The UK Gambling Commission has announced that it has fined VGC Leeds Limited, the company that runs Victoria Gate Casino, a total of £450,000 following an investigation that revealed social responsibility and anti-money laundering failures at the casino.
The Commission launched an investigation into the company’s handling of 10 customers following an issue that was identified during a standard compliance assessment that took place in July of 2019.
The investigation discovered that VGC had failed in its responsibility towards its customers who were susceptible to gambling-related harms. The Commission also uncovered a compliance issue where the operator failed to implement the correct anti-money laundering procedures for these customers.
In one instance a customer lost £275,000 over a period of 22 months before VGC requested evidence of the customer’s source of funds. The operator accepted a tax return that showed the customer had an income of £217,391. This was a clear indication that the customer could not afford to lose such a large amount.
In another case, a customer lost £93,294 over a period of 16 months. The operator recorded several ‘no concern’ interactions on the customer’s profile with no further evidence as to why these were recorded.
As result of the findings the Commission has fined VGC £241,000 to ‘represent divestment of the amount of financial gain accrued as a result of the accepted failings’, and a further £209,000 in lieu of a financial penalty. VGC must also pay the Commission costs of £21,578.17 for the investigation.
Speaking of the fine, Helen Venn, Commission Executive Director, said:
“These failings were identified as part of our ongoing drive to raise standards across the whole gambling industry. All operators should be very aware that we will not hesitate to take action against those who fail to follow rules that are in place to make gambling safer and prevent it being a source of crime.
Consumer protection should be an operator’s main priority and we would advise every gambling business to read today’s public statement so they do not make the same mistakes as VGC.”
The Commission also noted that VGC had assisted with the investigation and was fully aware of the seriousness of the issues.