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LeoVegas to appeal Spelinspektionen’s SEK2m AML penalty

| By Daniel O'Boyle
Online operator LeoVegas will appeal the SEK2m (£125.3m/€144.2m/$174.2m) penalty fee it received today from Swedish regulator Spelinspektionen for anti-money laundering failings, arguing the fee was unnecessary as it had already improved its due diligence routines.

The regulator issued LeoVegas with a warning and a SEK2m penalty fee today after finding several anti-money laundering (AML) failings relating to LeoVegas customers with particularly large winnings.

Spelinspektionen said that documentation for some of these customers was inaccurate or insufficient. It also pointed out that some were classed as at medium or low risk of money laundering despite evidence to the contrary. 

In addition, because of these risk classifications, Spelinspektionen said that some customers who should have received know-your-customer (KYC) checks did not.

However, LeoVegas argued that this penalty fee was unjustified, as the failings refer to events from January to November 2019. It had long since remedied any issues, the operator said.

As a result, the operator said it would challenge the decision.

“LeoVegas is continually developing its policies to ensure compliance and had already before today’s decision changed and updated its customer due diligence routines,” it said.

“LeoVegas intends to appeal today’s decision in order to allow a court to review the matter and give the entire industry further guidance on how the current regulation is to be interpreted.”

Former horse racing monopoly Aktiebolaget Trav och Galopp (ATG) also received a warning and a SEK2m penalty fee this morning, in this case for self-reported bonus violations. Bingo players with the operator were able to receive free bingo tokens if they bought tokens in late October 2020, despite laws in Sweden only allowing operators to issue initial introductory bonuses.

ATG said it accepts the penalty.

“It is a matter of course for us to report to the Swedish Gaming Inspectorate when we discover that we have made a mistake,” Maria Allmér, head of casino at ATG, said. “We regret what happened and accept the decision and the penalty fee.”

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