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NSW regulator fines Bet Right AU$20,000 for odds boost breach

| By Robert Fletcher
Liquor & Gaming New South Wales (NSW) has handed IRPSX PTY Ltd, trading as Bet Right, a fine of AU$20,000 (£10,148/€11,821/US$12,902) for breaching advertising rules in the Australian state.
RWA Australia

Following a regulator-led investigation, Bet Right was found to have illegally offered boosted odds to NSW consumers.

The NSW Betting and Racing Act prohibits adverts that include an inducement to play, or participate frequently, in gambling.

The ruling was announced in Sydney’s Downing Centre Local Court last week. However, Bet Right was found not guilty of three other, undisclosed, charges.

“We have actively engaged with online bookmakers and provided guidance on their compliance obligations,” Liquor & Gaming NSW’s executive director of regulatory operations, Jane Lin, said. “There is simply no excuse for wagering companies to advertise inducements. They can be assured that the risk of being caught and prosecuted is extremely high.”

Illegal advertising fines surpass $1.1m 

Since it began issuing fines for illegal advertising in 2016 the regulator has handed out more than $1.1m in penalties. 

Operators prosecuted in court have been fined more than $830,000, while the regulator has issued penalty infringement notices totalling $270,000.

These include 14 penalty infringement notices that were issued to Betr in April this year alone. These penalties amounted to a record $210,000.

Earlier this year, SportsChamps was also fined $40,000 and ordered to pay $14,000 in costs for breaching NSW gaming laws. This was the third time SportChamps was prosecuted in NSW. 

“We will continue to monitor television, print and social media for this illegal advertising and advocate for the courts to issue higher penalties,” Lin said.

Gaming reforms continue in NSW

The latest fine comes against a backdrop of major gaming reform in the state, with a number of changes being mooted.

This week, an independent panel set up to oversee reform met for the first time to discuss a cashless trial for electronic gaming machines (EGMs).

The panel will also be consulted on a review of ClubGRANTS, which provides grants to NSW causes. This has not been formally reviewed since 2013.

Other measures put forward in recent months include a ban on external signage for gaming rooms. Announced in May, the ban will come into effect from 1 September.

The government is also lowering the cap for poker machine entitlements by over $3,000. In addition, the government has passed legislation to ban political donations from clubs with pokies machines in NSW.

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