MGM Springfield and Encore Boston Harbor will be summoned by Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) for a virtual hearing next week to respond to illegal sports betting allegations. The regulator alleges that the two leading casino operators in the state accepted illegal bets and will use the hearing to weigh prospective penalties if the procedures in the casinos represented were breached last month.
Since March 1, 2023, in-person betting has been legal in the state of Massachusetts. But all three casino operators in the state reported that bettors were able to place illegal bets and the Massachusetts Gaming Commission has started an investigation and scheduled the hearing for MGM Springfield and Encore Boston Harbor to determine the extent of the breach and impose respective penalties on the operators.
Illegal Bets at MGM Springfield:
According to Mass Live, MGM Springfield accepted more than $1,200 in bets on Harvard University basketball games in February before the legalized in-person sports betting operations were launched. MGC investigators reportedly said the university was mistakenly designated as an out-of-state institution.
Also, MGC Senior Enforcement Counsel Kathleen Kramer reportedly said that Harvard’s location was also improperly indicated as being in Connecticut and not Cambridge when classified as ”no collegiate sports” to meet another legal requirement. According to the source, Bet MGM, which is the sports betting operator at MGM Springfield, corrected this mistake. Kramer reportedly added: “In addition, BetMGM has reviewed and verified that all Massachusetts collegiate sports are properly restricted.”
Bet MGM offered to conduct daily audits to prevent the recurrence and maintain compliance with the state’s requirement that all betting on the in-state collegiate teams is banned unless these compete in tournaments like March Madness. The Massachusetts Gaming Commission will consider the illegal bets at MGM Springfield on April 14 at 1;30 p.m., and then the same allegations for Encore Boston Harbor at 3 p.m.
Illegal Bets at Encore Boston Harbor:
As Mass Like reports, the commission investigates two cases of illegal sports bets: those placed on a Boston College women’s basketball team at the end of February at the Encore Boston Harbor and a total of $70 bets placed on another Boston College team earlier that month thus violating the ”no-collegiate betting” legal provision.
Massachusetts Gaming Commission Sports Betting Director Bruce Band reportedly said that the violation occurred due to a fault in the software system of GUN, a partner of Encore managing wagering lists.
Last month’s hearing clarified that the $70 illegal bets at Encore in February were due to officials rushing to upload information on approved wagering events ahead of the launch of legalized betting in the state. MGC continued the investigation and comes up with some additional allegations to be checked on April 14.
The executives of MGM Springfield, the state of Massachusetts’ first integrated luxury resort and entertainment destination, and the five-star luxury resort Encore Boston Harbor, the largest-ever private development in the state, will be heard before the regulator which will weigh the measure upon the hearing.