Mansion’s Casino.com hit with $450k fine by Dutch regulator
Onisac Limited, a holding company operating under the same Gibraltar licence as Mansion Group, has been hit with a €450,000 (£388,000/$508,000) fine by Dutch gaming regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) for illegally targeting consumers in the Netherlands.
The fine relates to the activities of the Casino.com site, which was censured for targeting Dutch consumers – with igaming prohibited in the Netherlands until licences are issued under the Remote Gaming Act – and for charging customers unreasonable administration costs.
A €200,000 fine was issued for illegally operating in the Netherlands, which was doubled to €400,000, as a result of the site having previously been punished for the same offence.
The €400,000 penalty was increased by a further €50,000, as the KSA ruled that Casino.com had charged players unreasonable fees. Players were charged a 5% administration fee each month if their account was inactive for more than 180 days, with the minimum fee set at $15, and the maximum $500.
Users were only given one warning 30 days in advance of the first fee being levied, with the charge applied as long as there was money in the account in question. This, the KSA said, was an unreasonable burden on consumers.
“This is a repeat offender,” KSA chair René Jansen said. “That makes the offence especially bad, and is grounds for doubling the fine.”
Casino.com was issued with a €150,000 fine in 2014 for activity between June 2012 and August 2013, only for Mansion and Onisac to appeal the fine, securing a temporary injunction against the penalty.
However its appeal was ultimately unsuccessful, with the Netherlands highest court, the Council of State, ruling in favour of the KSA in October 2018.
The fine is the latest to be issued since the KSA increased its minimum penalty for unlicensed online gaming activity to €200,000 as it looks to make fines more of a deterrent for operators. Since August last year, the likes of Casumo, William Hill, MRG Group, Betsson and 1xBet have all been fined for targeting consumers in the country.