Ladbrokes owner Entain faces another probe into anti-money laundering
AFTER being fined a record £17m last month, Ladbrokes owner Entain is now facing an investigation from down under over potential anti-money laundering breaches.
The investigation was announced this morning by the AUSTRAC – the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre – as part of an “extensive supervisory campaign covering the whole corporate bookmaking sector”. The London-listed Entain has about one-sixth of Australia’s online betting market via the Ladbrokes brand.
Entain Australia said it had acknowledged AUSTRAC’s decision and is co-operating with the investigation relating to the period July 2016 to June 2020.
The betting and gaming giant , which also owns Coral, was whacked with a record £17m fine over social responsibility and money laundering failures by the UK Gambling Commission last month.
The watchdog said the firm had repeatedly failed to protect problematic gamblers from betting huge sums in their shops and online casinos.
It said the Isle of Man headquartered firm let blocked customers open multiple accounts to avoid their bans and failed to carry out proper risk assessments to ensure its services were not being used for money laundering and terrorist financing.
Gambling Commission chief Andrew Rhodes noted that this was the “second time” Entain has “fallen foul” of the regulator, after the watchdog hit it with a £5.9m fine in 2019. Rhodes warned that “further serious breaches” could lead to the removal of the operator’s gambling license.
Entain said it accepted that certain legacy systems and processes were not in line, but that it found no evidence whatsoever of criminal spend within operations.