Only two weeks after being hit with a record-setting Gambling Commission fine of £17 million ($20.4 million) and British land-based and online casino and sportsbetting behemoth Entain is reportedly back in the news courtesy of its Ladbrokes brand.
According to a Sunday report from The Times newspaper, the company is being sued in the High Court over allegations that it failed to sufficiently intervene to help an online punter after he began showing signs of problem gambling. Simon Rose has purportedly claimed that the Ladbrokes-branded operation allowed him to lose £231,000 ($267,100) over just seven months on wagers that reached as high as £1.8 million ($2 million).
There are approximately 2,740 Ladbrokes-branded retail sportsbetting shops spread across the United Kingdom run by the London-headquartered Ladbrokes Coral arm of Entain. This branch is moreover behind the mobile-friendly online casino at Ladbrokes.com and helped its parent to chalk up a profit after tax rise of 142% year-on-year for 2021 to £275.6 million ($318.7 million).
Rose is reportedly alleging that he was given a Ladbrokes-linked account featuring a daily deposit limit of £20,000 ($23,100) in 2015 and subsequently permitted to place bets worth an average of £18,000 ($20,800) despite having a monthly salary of just £3,000 ($3,400). The plaintiff, who lodged his wagers in the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates, is purportedly accusing Entain of breaching the conditions of its Gambling Commission-issued license by failing to carry out effective source-of-funds checks or sufficiently monitor his high levels of betting.
The High Court will purportedly also be told that Entain had acted irresponsibly because it had not asked Rose to verify from where his funds had originated despite the punter holding an aggregated deficit of more than £100,000 ($115,600). The newspaper went on to report that the plaintiff permanently excluded himself from May of 2016 and is now seeking the return of his staked cash.
Previously known as GVC Holdings until undergoing a December of 2020 name-change, London-listed Entain reportedly paid £4 billion ($4.6 billion) some five years ago to purchase the Ladbrokes Coral operation. At the time of the acquisition and the giant was purportedly being run by industry veteran Kenny Alexander, who departed in 2020 just days before a tax investigation was launched into ‘potential corporate offending’ related to its former Turkish iGaming business.
The Times reported that Entain was last month penalized by the Gambling Commission for a series of ‘unacceptable’ social responsibility and anti-money laundering breaches linked to its online LC International and Ladbrokes Betting and Gaming subordinates. This purportedly represented the second time the firm had been hit with a serious sanction following the levying of an analogous £5.9 million ($7.1 million) fine July of 2019.