3 May, 2024 @ 18:00
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Spain issues €81million worth of fines to 17 online gambling sites – this is why

Spain issues €81million worth of fines to 17 online gambling sites - this is why

SPAIN’S gambling regulator has dished out fines totalling over €81 million to 17 online betting websites in the second half of 2023.

The DGOJ said the sites committed serious or very serious infractions, with 10 of them ordered to shut down, according to the El Pais newspaper.

The biggest penalty of €35 million and a four-year closure was given to the National Organisation of the Spanish and European Disabled(ONDEE), which had been accused of unfair competition by the ONCE charity.

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It had been running an unlicensed lottery and even pretended to be ONCE in selling tickets when it is not allowed to do so.

The DGOJ said that was the penalty was ‘extraordinarily severe’ and though the ONDEE website is still online, it stated that it will be closed.

Since details of penalties started being made public in 2021, 139 fines have been imposed- totalling €333 million.

Mikel Arana, director-general of the DGOJ, told El Pais: “These sanctions are very important in maintaining a safe gambling environment.”

“The fines to unlicensed operators are intended to prevent illegal gambling in the Spanish market,” he added.

“That is why, as soon as we detect them, we try to block them, because they are a gateway for minors, or for gambling addicts who have registered for self-protection to avoid using such websites.”

Arana said that the illegal sites did not follow Spain’s safe gambling laws.

The very serious infringements operating without a licence in Spain are Rabadi, Uno Digital Media, Eight Stars, Mrsloty Games Tech, Entretenimiento Rojo, Onyxion Malta, Trw Corporate, Vdsoft&Script Development and Uniquegame.

Each of them have been fined €5 million and ordered to close their websites for two years.

Mikel Arana said: “Illegal gambling in Spain is below 3% and we are European leaders in fighting unauthorised sites, but with some of them it is like playing cat and mouse, because we close them and they reopen under another name.”

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