Smarkets Handed Six-Figure Fine by Gambling Commission

An online gambling operator will pay a financial penalty of £630,000 after an investigation by the Gambling Commission revealed a series of anti-money laundering and social responsibility failings.

Smarkets (Malta) Limited will pay the six-figure sum for the failings, which saw customers being allowed to gamble without adequate source of funds checks being carried out and failing to identify and interact with customers at risk of experiencing harm.

The operator has also received a formal warning and will undergo an audit to ensure it is effectively implementing its anti-money laundering and social responsibility policies, procedures and controls.

Examples of the failings by Smarkets include one customer being allowed to deposit £395,000 in a four-month period, without the appropriate source of funds checks being carried out by Smarkets. Another example is of an individual transferring significant levels of funds between accounts without scrutiny or source of funds checks occurring.

Sarah Gardner, Commission Deputy CEO, said: “This case was identified through compliance checks and once again highlights how we will take action against gambling operators who fail their customers.

“Our investigation into Smarkets unearthed a variety of failures where customers were put at risk of gambling harm.

“It was obvious that poor systems and processes were in place which contributed to these breaches, driven by the company’s failure to effectively implement its policies and controls.”

The £630,000 Smarkets fine is the latest in a string of enforcement cases led by the Commission this year. Earlier this month online operator LeoVegas was fined £1.32million for social responsibility and anti-money laundering failings.

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