Tightening up on Gambling Inducements in Victoria

Aussie territory pushes charges against four gambling companies

Having in mind the recent charges raised against four gambling companies, it seems like the Australian territory of Victoria is tightening up on gambling inducements to players to bet. It is assessed that more similar charges are to follow.

According to the Age newspaper, one of the charges raised aimed at Tabcorp subsidiary Luxbet, which offered illegal rewards to punters as an inducement to bet on the 2010 Australian Open tennis championships. The company pleaded the guilt as it was allegedly offering prospective clients ''more favourable odds'' on Roger Federer and Serena Williams winning the singles titles. It was stated by the paper that the prosecution of Luxbet represents the first case under the new laws, adding that other three companies are in the hot water as well: Sportsbet, International All Sports and Eskander's Betstar.

In the Luxbet case the prosecutor Alex Fitzpatrick told Melbourne magistrate Elizabeth Lambden that the company requested its new customers to open an account with at least A$100 and to place up to A$50 in order to receive ''bonus'' winnings. On the other side, the Tabcorp/Luxbet attorney explained that group advertising was carefully and legally vetted, but that ever since the commission remained silent regarding a similar advertizing issue, the group assumed wrong that its promotion was in line with regulations.

He said that ''they [the Commission] now take a different view of interpreting the regulations,'' and requested from the court to accept that the breach had not been deliberate, and that Luxbet had entered a guilty plea in the interest of avoiding a confrontation. Apart from this, he proposed that the punishment for the company should be an order to make a contribution to charity.

Without a conviction, the magistrate ruled a 12-month undertaking, to be of good behavior and it also ordered Luxbet to make a A$1 200 donation and pay costs.

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