Dutch gaming regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) has his Onisac Limited with a €450,000 for targeting players in the Netherlands illegally. The company operates under the same Gibraltar license issued to the Mansion Group.
The fine was issued specifically for actions related to the company’s Casino.com online casino site. As online gambling operations are illegal in the Netherlands until licenses are issued under the recent Remote Gaming Act, the site was censured for targeting Dutch consumers and charging them unreasonable administrative costs.
The operator was initially fined €200,000 for operating illegally in the Netherlands. That amount was then doubled to €400,000 because they had already been cited for the same offence in the past. The KSA also ruled that players on the site were being charged unreasonable account administration fees and added an additional €50,000 on top.
The casino has a policy of charging players a 5% administration fee for every month their account remains inactive after 180 days. The charge is implemented with a minimum of $15 and a maximum of $500. Players with inactive accounts were only given 30 days prior notice before the first fee was charged to their account balance and the fee would be applied every month for as long as there was a balance in the account and it remained inactive. The KSA deemed this practice an unreasonable burden on consumers.
René Jansen, KSA chair, said, “This is a repeat offender. That makes the offence especially bad, and is grounds for doubling the fine.”
The KSA had previously issued a fine for the amount of €150,000 to Casino.com in 2014 for activities from June 2012 through August 2013. Mansion and Onisac appealed the fine and won a temporary injunction but the Netherland’s Council of State finally ruled on the side of the KSA in October 2018.
This is the latest fine handed out by the KSA since the minimum penalty for unlicensed online gaming was raised to €200,000. The authority is trying to make fines a more significant deterrent for unlicensed operators outside of the country. Several well known brands have been fined recently for targeting Dutch consumers including William Hill, Betsson, MRG Group, and Casumo.