After a year of court battles, KSA decided to punish LCS for providing gaming services without a valid license, a clear breach of the Dutch Betting and Gaming Act (WOK), which mandates that all operators have a municipal license in order to lawfully offer gaming services.
When KSA fined LCS €165,000 in August 2022, the original decision to punish the corporation was taken. Additionally, KSA commanded the operator located in Malta to stop promoting illegal gaming right now.
KSA’s Chairman on the Penalty
KSA Chairman René Jansen commented on this action, stating, “An order subject to penalty is an often very effective method to immediately stop illegal supply. However, illegal providers who subsequently go underground should not think that they have ‘bought off’ their illegal activities; the previously committed violations can also be penalized. We continue to carry out re-checks to verify whether the supply has actually ceased.”
In March 2022, the KSA started looking at LCS. It was discovered throughout the inquiry that it was feasible to visit the website using a Dutch IP address, log in, and make a deposit to play games of chance. The regulator also pointed out that when users signed up, the site did not check their ages.
Additionally, the research revealed that the site did not leave the Netherlands off its list of acceptable countries, automatically supplied the +31 Dutch country code during the sign-up procedure, or included it in the dropdown choices. The site received a substantial amount of traffic from the Netherlands, according to data from Similarweb analytics.
After receiving the punishment, LCS appealed the ruling, claiming that it was impossible for a user from the Netherlands to sign up and place a wager. Additionally, the operator contested the veracity of the Similarweb data, labeling KSA’s revenue forecast based on it as “careless and not based on established facts.”
LCS claimed that the regulator had overstepped its bounds and had haphazardly put together a report on LCS’s operations.
In response to these criticisms, KSA said that while gamers who visit an unregistered site do so at their own risk, providing the site in the first place is illegal. Regarding the criticism of the Similarweb statistics, KSA clarified that as it lacks direct knowledge, it is forced to depend on estimations from unbiased third parties, which act as a standard for gauging visits.
The KSA further stated that LCS has the option to give information about itself that may be independently verified, which can cause changes to the pertinent factors. LCS has not indicated a desire to pursue this choice, though.
The administrative fee and the payment of a penalty are two different kinds of punishments, according to KSA.
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