By Andy Young

Tabcorp Holdings has been convicted and fined $16,500 and ordered to pay legal costs of $100,000 for publishing illegal advertising that offered NSW residents inducements to participate in gambling or to open a betting account.

The company was sentenced at Downing Centre Local Court following an investigation by Liquor & Gaming NSW. The offences related to advertisements which appeared in The Daily Telegraph on 28 August 2015 called Ignite Friday Night and Luck of the Draw, as well as advertisements on Tabcorp’s website published on 27 August 2015.

The 2012 Betting and Racing Regulations prohibit licensed wagering operators from publishing any advertising that offers NSW residents any inducement to participate in gambling activity or open a betting account. The advertised promotions offered bonus bets and other rewards to participants who gambled or opened a betting account. 

In sentencing Tabcorp Magistrate McIntyre imposed the maximum penalty of $5,500 for each of the three offences.

McIntyre said that a strong message had to be sent to other gambling companies to underline that the gambling advertisements link the community to gambling, and that the community and vulnerable people have to be protected. 

She said while Tabcorp had contended that the offences were a one-off or aberration, she needed to consider the sheer number of advertisements and the fact they were published to wide audiences in The Daily Telegraph and unfiltered online. 

McIntyre added it was “crystal clear” each of the ads was in breach of the regulation, which is aimed at protecting problem gamblers and would-be problem gamblers from engaging in further gambling activity.

The Tabcorp case follows recent successful prosecution and convictions for similar activities brought by Liquor & Gaming NSW against Ubet, Unibet, Crownbet, Topbetta, Bet365, Ladbrokes, and ClassicBet Pty Ltd.

An industry factsheet on the publication of gaming advertising is available on the Liquor & Gaming NSW website.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *