The Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission has accused Tabcorp and eight venues of allowing minors access to electronic betting terminals.
Tabcorp is facing 54 charges, including 27 counts for underage gambling and failure to supervise terminals. Another 27 charges were filed against Tabcorp’s TAB agency and the venues.
The venues in question are the Olympic Hotel, Brunswick Club, Edwardes Lake Hotel, Parkview Hotel, Albion Charles Hotel, Doncaster Hotel, Rose Shamrock & Thistle Hotel, and Northcote TAB Agency.
Venue operators are charged with allowing minors to gamble, allowing minors to enter an area of gaming machines and failing to ensure that the machines were adequately supervised. The TAB agency has been charged with allowing minors to gamble, and failing to ensure that terminals were reasonably supervised.
All incidents involving venues occurred between 8 September and the 1 November of last year.
If found guilty, the operators face a maximum collective fine of more than AU$1.0m (PS520,000/EUR603,000/US$644,000). Tabcorp may also be fined up to $699,000.
Annette Kimmitt, CEO of VGCCC, said that allowing minors gambling is one of the worst things you can do. All gambling venues should ensure that they don’t accept bets from minors and ask anyone who they suspect may be underage to show identification.
VGCCC states that all charges are related to a violation of the Gambling Regulation Act, 2003. The regulator has no further comments to make at this time.
Victoria’s regulator cracks down on rule breakers
In recent months, the VGCCC was very busy issuing fines to operators who broke rules.
The most recent charges were brought last week against Rumotel, operator of Tower Hotel. The violation was related to the gambling control laws in the state.
Tower Hotel is facing 34 charges in Victoria, for allegedly operating gaming machines without YourPlay pre-commitment mandatory technology. A second charge was filed for allegedly failing to ensure that staff completed mandatory training.
YourPlay is required for all Victoria licensees. YourPlay lets users set time and money limits, as well as keep track of machine play.
Last month, the VGCCC also sanctioned Australian Leisure and Hospitality Group for similar violations.
BlueBet, which was also charged in August with violating advertising rules, could face a fine up to $945,000. BlueBet placed three gambling advertisements on Victoria billboards over a period of two weeks last year.
The VGCCC stated that this was a violation of state laws which ban static gambling advertisements from appearing in specific locations.
Tabcorp fined record $1m
Tabcorp’s Wagering and Betting System was down during the Spring Racing Carnival 2020. The service was down for about 36 hours, despite the Wagering and Betting Licence and Agreement requiring it to be available continuously.
VGCCC criticised Tabcorp for its conduct during the investigation. The VGCCC also criticized the operator’s response to VGCCC directions in the case that led to the fine.