Caesars Entertainment to pay £13m after a series of failures

Simona Boshkova | Published 2 Apr 2020, 11:21 a.m.

As we’ve already reported on several occasions, the UK Gambling Commission started a process of reviewing the gambling operators’ licences months ago. Just in the past month and a half, the UKGC issued a couple of penalties to the operators that failed to comply with the Commission’s requirements. The last one came from Lotteries that failed to comply with some important practices. What’s more, one of the most popular casinos, Betway, received the highest penalty for money laundering failings.

Now we are bringing you news regarding Caesars Entertainment, an American gaming hotel and casino cooperation. According to the UK Gambling Commission, the operator is to pay £13m after a series of failures and must implement a set of improvements. The improvements are focused on social responsibility, money laundering, and customer interaction including the VIP customers.

Three senior managers have left the company

As mentioned, Caesars Entertainment is accused of a series of failures and therefore is to pay £13m to the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harm. As a result of the UKGC investigation, three senior managers have voluntarily surrendered their personal licences and left the company. The Commission’s investigation into the Personal Management Licence holders is ongoing.

Caesars Entertainment is a land-based gambling business that operates 11 casinos across Britain. The UKGC found a series of failings in the way the company took decisions about VIP customers in the period from January 2016 to December 2018. Some of the social responsibility failures include inadequate interaction with a customer who has previously self-excluded and lost £240,000 over a 13-month period. Also, the operator failed to have proper interaction with a customer who lost £323,000 in a period of 12 months and displayed signs of problem gambling. Additionally, the Commission found failures in the operator’s interaction with a couple of customers who identified themselves as employed and lost huge amounts of money in a short period.

In terms of money laundering failings, the operator is accused of not carrying out adequate source of funds checks on a customer who was allowed to drop around £3.5 million and lose £1.6 million over a period of three months. Moreover, the operator didn’t obtain proper evidence of the source of funds for a politically exposed person who lost a huge amount of money over a year. The operator has also failed to carry out adequate source of funds checks on a couple of other customers who have lost thousands of pounds in a 12-month period.

These failings are extremely serious, according to UKGC

Neil McArthur, Chief Executive of the UK Gambling Commission, said that they have published this case because the practices of VIP management need rapid progress. According to him, the Caesars Entertainment failings are extremely serious because they failed to put customer safety at the top of business decisions. He added that the UKGC will continue to investigate the licence holders that were involved in this case.

The UK Gambling Commission finds customer safety as a main priority for every gambling operator, and that is non-negotiable. Whatever type of gambling a company offers, it must know its customers. Gambling operators must be very careful especially when it comes to the VIP customers, and that’s why the Commission’s regulatory action will continue.

The action against Caesars Entertainment is the latest in line of the UKGC regulatory actions. So far this year, the regulatory actions led to the gambling operators paying £27m in penalty packages.