Shaun Matthews and the Mansfield Park Hotel have been fined in excess of $30,000 for gaming regulation breaches, in the first prosecution of its kind in South Australia.

Under the Gaming Machines Act 1992, venues that possess EGMs have restrictions placed on their ATMs, with a maximum of $200 at a time placed on withdrawals from EFTPOS facilities.

In the Adelaide Magistrates Court, the Mansfield Park Hotel and the venue’s director, Shaun Matthews, admitted to breaches of the Gaming Machines Act. The court heard that on 40 occasions between February 2015 and December 2016 the venue allowed withdrawals of amounts greater than $200 from its EFTPOS facilities, ranging from $250 to $400 in one transaction.

In addition, the court was told that Matthews had withdrawn cash over the limit himself.

“While the amounts themselves may not appear significant, the course of conduct spanning two years is serious. The limits on EFTPOS withdrawals are an important measure in the fight against problem gambling,” stated Commissioner for Liquor and Gambling Dini Soulio.

“They help limit the spending, and potential losses, of people who may be at risk of gambling related harm.

“By allowing withdrawals above this amount, the hotel was clearly failing in its duty of care to vulnerable patrons.”

The Mansfield Park Hotel was convicted and fined $35,000, however the fine was reduced by 40 per cent to $21,000 as a result of an early guilty plea. Matthews was personally fined $10,500.

Australian Hotelier reached out to Matthews for comment through both the Mansfield Park Hotel and its operating company, Matthews Hospitality, but has yet to hear back.

Vanessa Cavasinni

Vanessa Cavasinni is the managing editor of Australian Hotelier and Club Management, trade publications for the pub and club sectors respectively. Vanessa has been at the helm of Australian Hotelier since...

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