After the regulator described this as a “high penalty fee” the court reassessed the decision taken and moved the status of the fee to “medium-high penalty fee”
Linkoping, the administrative court of Sweden, has halved the fine imposed on Kindred Group subsidiary Spooniker.
In March 2020, SiGMA News had reported that Kindred received a warning and a penalty fee of SEK100 for handing out financial incentives to customers. This was done as these incentives are in breach of the country's new gambling legislation which at the time limited bonus offers to one per customer.
The subsidiary Spooniker offered these unauthorised bonuses during the early days of the Swedish gambling market back in 2019 and as soon as the regulator assessed its legislation, the company took the opportunity to withdraw the agreed on bonuses from the players.
According to Sweden's law, licencees are only permitted to offer bonuses upon client's sign-up. Investigation revealed that a number of unauthorised bonuses some of which include an online bingo loyalty scheme were issued to Unibet, Maria Casino, Storspelare, Bingo and iGame sites in March 2019.
Further investigation uncovered that Kindred was not correctly licensed to offer free spins, free online bingo games, free bets, and rewards to players for playing poker but still proceeded with doing so. Kindred appealed the court's decision and argued their case stating that these givings should be considered as an in-game mechanic.
Fines in Sweden are given based on the seriousness of the offence combined with the operator's annual turnover. After the regulator described this as a “high penalty fee” the court reassed the decision taken and moved the status of the fee to “medium-high penalty fee” as they felt it was more appropriate to the one previously issued. The penalty has been reduced from SEK100m to SEK50M.
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