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AUSTRAC Start Investigation of bet365 for Potential AML and CTF Breaches

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An enforcement investigation has been initiated by the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC), which is Australia’s financial crime watchdog, into Hillside (Australia New Media), which operates under the brand name bet365.

The investigation will seek to determine whether bet365 has met all of its obligations as set out in the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006 (AML/CTF Act). It comes after AUSTRAC reviewed an external audit report of the company, which it ordered back in 2022.

Laws Designed to Avoid Exploitation by Criminals

The CEO of AUSTRAC, Brendan Thomas, explained that the AML/CTF Act is designed to ensure that businesses are not exploited by criminals.

Corporate bookmakers must have robust systems in place to ensure they can manage and mitigate risks associated with money laundering and terrorism financing. Businesses without adequate processes in place to manage those risks leave themselves vulnerable to exploitation by criminals.

Brendan ThomasAUSTRAC CEO

Strict Punishment for Non-Compliance

The investigation is designed to ensure that bookmakers and other companies in the gambling industry are taking all the necessary steps to prevent illegal activity. If a company is found to be noncompliant, then AUSTRAC can issue it with a major fine.

In May 2023, Crown Resorts was found to have breached the AML/CTF Act and the Federal Court then approved a penalty of AU$450 million that was issued by AUSTRAC.

The investigation into bet365 is ongoing and as such, AUSTRAC has declined to make any further comment.

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