New South Wales Issues Sixth Fine to SportChamps for Gambling Inducements

Melbourne-based betting company SportChamps has once again landed in trouble, facing a substantial fine of $17,500 for enticing individuals to participate in gambling activities. This latest conviction marks the sixth time the company has been found in violation of the NSW Betting and Racing Act, indicating a pattern of non-compliance with established gaming regulations.

The charges stem from an investigation by Liquor and Gaming NSW, which uncovered that SportChamps utilized advertisements on its website and Facebook pages to lure individuals into gambling. The specific inducements included phrases like ‘punt for free’ and ‘receive a free bet each day,’ both of which are explicitly prohibited in New South Wales.

This latest incident adds to SportChamps’ troubling history, as the company has previously faced legal consequences for gambling advertising offenses on five separate occasions dating back to 2017. The persistent nature of these violations raises concerns about the effectiveness of current regulatory measures in curbing malpractices within the online betting industry.

Jane Lin, Executive Director of Regulatory Operations at Liquor & Gaming NSW, expressed deep concern over SportChamps’ repeated violations, emphasizing the operator’s accumulation of multiple convictions for violating laws designed to protect people from gambling harm. Lin stressed that while wagering operators can advertise their products, inducements like offers of increased odds or bonus bets to entice people to open betting accounts are strictly prohibited.

In addition to the recent fine, SportChamps had previously been fined $40,000 in March, with an additional $14,000 in costs, for breaching state gaming laws. The company’s persistent legal troubles not only have the potential to impact its financial standing but also to tarnish its reputation within the industry.

Under the laws in New South Wales, it is prohibited to provide inducements for opening betting accounts, referring friends to open such accounts, maintaining an open betting account, or consenting to receive gambling advertising. Any corporation found guilty of publishing prohibited gambling advertising can face a maximum penalty of $110,000, while individuals may be subject to a maximum fine of $11,000.

The ongoing legal challenges faced by SportChamps underscore the broader issues within the regulatory landscape of the online betting industry. Despite previous fines and penalties, the company appears to have continued its questionable practices, disregarding the state’s gambling laws. This not only raises questions about SportChamps’ commitment to compliance but also highlights the need for more robust regulatory measures to curb such activities.