An investigation by the Gambling Commission found “a catalogue of social responsibility, money laundering and customer interaction failures” leading to £13m in sanctions and the departure of three of Caesars Entertainment UK’s senior managers.
Caesars Entertainment UK must pay a £13m penalty and implement a series of improvements following an investigation by the British Gambling Commission.
The land-based gambling business, which operates 11 casinos across Britain, will pay the money after the Commission found “serious systematic failings” in the way the company took decisions about VIP customers between January 2016 and December 2018.
The regulator cited “a catalogue of social responsibility, money laundering and customer interaction failures including those involving ‘VIPs’”.
“We have published this case at this time because it’s vitally important that the lessons are factored into the work the industry is currently doing to address poor practices of VIP management in which we must see rapid progress made,” said Neil McArthur, CEO of the Gambling Commission.
“The failings in this case are extremely serious. A culture of putting customer safety at the heart of business decisions should be set from the very top of every company and Caesars failed to do this. We will now continue to investigate the individual licence holders involved with the decisions taken in this case.
“In recent times the online sector has received the greatest scrutiny around VIP practices but VIP practices are found right across the industry and our tough approach to compliance and enforcement will continue, whether a business is on the high street or online,” he continued. “We are absolutely clear about our expectations of operators – whatever type of gambling they offer they must know their customers. They must interact with them and check what they can afford to gamble with – stepping in when they see signs of harm. Consumer safety is non-negotiable.” As a result of the investigation three senior managers at the company surrendered their personal licences. The £13m penalty will go towards funding the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harm. “Caesars Entertainment UK acknowledges falling short of its standards and accepts the settlement reached with the British Gambling Commission,” said Caesars chief regulatory and compliance officer Susan Carletta. “Since discovering, immediately addressing and reporting deficiencies in 2018, we have enhanced our compliance policies and procedures, and are complying with the licence conditions and commission’s guidance for best practice. We are confident of the efficacy of our compliance initiatives going forward.”