Published: March 19, 2023

Germany’s regulator, Gemeinsamen Glücksspielbehörde der Länder (GGL), has imposed a fine on a gaming operator

For the first time in its brief history, Germany’s Gemeinsamen Glücksspielbehörde der Länder (GGL) has imposed a fine on a gaming operator. The new German gaming regulator just took over at the beginning of the year and immediately got to work implementing and enforcing unified rules for the gaming industry.

The GGL said in its notice about the violation that the unidentified company had violated advertising rules. It promoted its products on websites that also promote offshore operators, which violates the standing State Treaty on Gambling.

The regulator added that it issued a five-figure fine to the company for the violation. However, like with the name of the operator, it didn’t specify the exact amount.

Deliberate Intent

The GGL said that the operator “deliberately” promoted its activities on different websites that also promote unlicensed options. In Germany, legal providers cannot place advertisements on websites that also contain advertisements for unlicensed providers. This is a part of Germany’s new  GlücksspielNeuregulierungStaatsVerag, the state gambling treaty that entered into force on July 1, 2021.

After the introduction of the new laws,  online casinos in Germany could only operate if they had a license. This has led to several lawsuits against operators, including PokerStars, with players suing to recover their losses when the operator acted illegally in the country.

As a result of the willful violation, the GGL hit the operator with a fine of at least €10,000 (US$10,622). When announcing it, CEO Ronald Benter warned that the regulator will “impose heavy fines for violations” and possibly withdraw the licenses of repeat offenders.

The regulator also pointed out that players can check the official list of the GGL to see which online providers have a license. This way, they know for sure that they use only those providers that meet the required protection and risk management the GGL prescribes.
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