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From gamblers caught cheating on the tables and taken to task, to the prospect of sports betting finally coming into Brazil and more, the gaming industry has seen some fresh developments.
The first story comes in from the gambling hub of U.S. i.e. Nevada where we hear the state’s Gaming Control Board is sticking to its unforgiving stand towards defaulting gamblers. The board has banned two more players and listed them in its ‘Black book.’
In Brazil, the lower legislative body, aka the Chamber of Deputies has given its nod to a measure that includes allowing sports betting in the country. While the measure has to now be approved by the Senate, with many leaders like incoming Minister of Justice Sergio Moro in full support, sports betting may soon find its way into the country.
In UK, the 35-member Remote Gambling Association (RGA) plans to discuss a new and voluntary advertising standards code for its members. The RGA plans to impose certain restrictions on gambling advertising that all its members will have to follow. About time, we’d say if the gambling operators wish to regain the trust of people and political leadership.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board has banned two gamblers, adding them to its ‘black book’ that lists gamblers who are banned from any of the state’s casinos. The players, identified as Anthony Granito and James Cooper were part of a four-man team that scammed the Bellagio out of nearly $1.2 Million between 2012 and 2014.
Coopers who is a craps dealer and Granito, a player connived with two others – Mark Branco and Jeffrey Martin. The two banned gamblers were found to be mumbling a ‘hop bet’ under their breath whenever a shooter rolled the dice, and the dealers would confirm a ‘winning’ bet after the roll. They continued this for close to two years but then came to notice of the casino authorities, who found the long-shot payouts that kept hitting the duo as suspicious.
Nevada’s ‘black book’ was created in 1960 and lists out names of cheats and gamblers with ties to organized crime including mob associates, illegal bookmakers, slot-machine riggers etc.
Cooper, who cooperated with the police during investigation, has been sentenced to serve two to five years in prison while Martin was sentenced to serve three to eight years.
The lower legislative body in Brazil has approved a lottery legislation that includes plans to authorize sports betting for the first time in the country.
On Tuesday, the Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies okayed the Provisional Measure (PM)846/2018, that includes the plan to authorize land-based and online sports betting, in addition to spelling out the framework for division of lottery revenue across different public security, social and cultural programs.
The measure will be presented before the country’s Senate that must approve it by November 28, in order for it to become law.
Earlier in November, Brazil’s incoming Minister of Justice Sergio Moro expressed support towards the measure and said that it was very important that the security forces received the extra lottery funding.
As per reports, the measure received only one negative vote and that came in from Gilberto Nascimento, an MP from the Social Christian Party who questioned the logic behind operating a lottery through computers to “create a generation of addicts to generate a few million reals more for the public safety fund?”
The legislation requires land-based operators to pay minimum 80% of betting handle to their customers, while their own gross revenue cannot exceed 14% and remaining 6% to be split between the listed government-funded programs. Likewise, revenue for online operators has been capped at 8% while a minimum 89% is to go to the players and the remaining to the government.
The legislation has also outlined a period of two years for the Ministry of Finance to prepare the required betting regulations and issue licenses.
Leading gambling operators in UK have come together to discuss the development of a new voluntary mandate on advertising of betting and gambling.
According to a Sky News report, the 35-member Remote Gambling Association (RGA) industry group planned to hold a meeting to chalk out a roadmap for developing a new advertising standards code’ that the RGA members will have to follow.
Based in London and Brussels, the RGA includes members from UK and Europe. While the association reviews its self-imposed advertising codes every year, the proposed restrictions this year are being termed the most restrictive till date.
The RGA members have reportedly called on bringing in a voluntary advertising code. The move is being surmised as an attempt by gambling operators to regain public and political trust.
Apart from setting a framework on gambling advertising, the board of directors of RGA were also to discuss restricting one gambling or betting advert per commercial break and a ban on all forms of ‘in-play’ or ‘call to action’ adverts during live sports broadcasts.
In October, the UK Gambling Commission had warned its licensees that there was trouble brewing since the public and political attitude was hardening towards gambling advertising. Several days later, the head of GVC Holdings, Kenny Alexander admitted that there were “far too many gambling ads on TV’. Alexander suggested that the gambling industry needed to collaboratively adopt strict new standards to ensure a level playing field.
Earlier this month, UK broadcasting giant Sky announced a strict new protocol on broadcasting gambling related content to be included across its channels from August 2019 onwards. The protocol already includes the ‘one ad per break’ restriction.
All eyes are now on RGA to see if the meeting can deliver a consensus on the advertising ethics and standards across its members.