Sonofslots Operator Faced with €2.1m Fine for Unauthorized Operations in the Netherlands

OCR Editor. - October 19, 2023
Netherlands law

The Netherlands Gambling Authority has sanctioned LCS Ltd, proprietors of Sonofslots, with a hefty €2.1m fine for unlicensed online gambling operations within the country.

In a recent move to enforce gambling regulations, the Netherlands Gambling Authority has imposed a substantial €2.1 million fine on LCS Ltd. The company's breach of Dutch gambling laws resulted in satisfactory results by offering online gambling services through its Sonofslots platform without obtaining the requisite licensing.

The regulatory body's action against LCS Ltd, based in Malta, can be traced back to 2022, when it was discovered that the company had contravened the Dutch Gambling Act. Following the detection of these infractions, the Dutch regulator promptly handed down a cease-and-desist order alongside a conditional penalty payment.

While LCS Ltd did take corrective action by discontinuing its unauthorized operations in the Dutch market, this did not exempt them from further repercussions. As a result, the Netherlands Gambling Authority opted to mete out a fine as a punitive measure for their prior unauthorized activities in the region.

The magnitude of the fine is not arbitrary. It has been carefully calibrated to reflect LCS Ltd's estimated earnings from its operations in the Netherlands, ensuring that the penalty is appropriate and proportionate to the scale of the violation.

René Jansen, the Chairperson of the Netherlands Gambling Authority, provided further clarity on the issue. He emphasized the importance of regulatory measures like the conditional penalty payment, terming it a potent tool in promptly curbing illegal gambling services. Jansen said,

A conditional penalty payment ('last onder dwangsom') is often a very effective method to stop illegal offerings immediately.

Furthermore, Jansen warned other operators who might be entertaining thoughts of bypassing the established regulatory framework. He cautioned,

However, illegal operators should not think that they have now 'bought off' their illegal activities: the previously committed violations can also be punished.

This fine serves as a reminder of the regulatory body's unwavering commitment to upholding the integrity of the gambling sector in the Netherlands. Local and international operators are advised to adhere to the legal requirements and obtain the necessary licenses before offering their services in the country. Those who flout these regulations risk facing severe penalties, as evidenced by the punitive action taken against Sonofslots.

In light of such strict enforcement, the broader message to the gambling community is clear: The Netherlands Gambling Authority will not tolerate any breaches, and companies should prioritize compliance to avoid hefty fines and potential bans from the market.

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