Swedish Trade Association Responds to Money Laundering Proposals

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The Swedish Trade Association for Online Gambling (BOS), has given its opinion on the proposal from the gambling regulator to change the fine structure for breaches of anti-money laundering (AML) rules in the jurisdiction.

The Swedish Gaming Authority wants to increase penalty fines on gaming operators for breaking AML rules.

BOS comprises of more than 20 gambling companies in the gambling industry in the Swedish mar-ket, and are all licensed by Spelinspektionen, the Swedish regulator. The industry body has been invited to give its thoughts on the upcoming changes to the proposed Money Laundering Act.

The first point raised by BOS was that decisions made by the gaming regulation monitor must be of the highest quality and they should only issue fines that they feel would stand up to scrutiny by the court system in the country. It also felt that fines should be heavy for any actions by gaming operators that do not create an environment of responsible gambling.

BOS Believes Fines Should Be Proportionate

BOS was keen to stress that while it is in favor of tougher penalties for breaches of AML rules it is concerned that fines for gaming operators should be calculated based on the operator's Gross Gaming Revenue (GGR).

They point to a decision by the Supreme Administrative Court earlier this year which stated that fines on gambling operators should be based on GGR and not on the company turnover. This will result in any fines being drastically reduced.

Typically, the gambling surplus makes up 5-10 percent of the total turnover, while profits to gambling consumers thus account for 90-95 percent. It falls on its own unreasonableness that penalty fees to be paid by the gambling company are based on money that does not belong to the gambling company, but that belongs to the gambling consumers.

Gustaf HoffstedtSecretary General of BOS

Related: Spelinspektionen Authority under Scrutiny by Swedish Audit Office

Swedish Government Consults Industry Stakeholders

The Swedish government has asked BOS for its comments on the new changes to AML violations for the upcoming bill. Spelinspektionen feels that collaborating with industry stakeholders will re-sult in ongoing regulation that is fair and proportionate to all parties in the gaming industry.

BOS stated it was pleased to have been asked by the regulator for the trade bodies' thoughts on the new AML changes and raised these issues in response.

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