s of January 1, 2017, illegal iGaming operators may face penalties of up to €820,000 depending on how serious their violations are. The Dutch gambling authority has not been shy on laying massive fines on trespassers over the years, but these have not been as massive when compared to the above-stated amount.
Last year, online gambling operators Bluemay Enterprises and Redcorp were fined €240,000 each for repeatedly breaching local regulations by featuring Dutch flags and Dutch language on their casino websites and attracting Dutch players with certain bonuses. The two entities had provoked Kansspelaanbieders’ anger in previous years but had managed to avoid stiffer measures against their operations.
Up until now, the Dutch gambling regulator has sent individual letters to violators to inform them that they can only do business in the country under certain conditions
Online gambling operators have first been warned that they need to follow the Dutch regulations regarding the provision of iGaming options and their promotion and advertising, and have been imposed penalties if failing to comply.
Kansspelaanbieders said in a Thursday statement that enough word has been spread that online gambling operations are illegal in the country, if conducted without the necessary licensure. This is why the regulator deems it the right time to introduce new and heavier penalties for those who neglect the law.
In July, the Dutch Lower House passed a proposed legislation that aims at regulating the local iGaming market
The bill will now have to face a Senate vote. House support for the proposal was almost overwhelming so many believe that the Netherlands may eventually have its online gambling industry regulated after multiple delays over the years.
Following the positive vote in July, it looked like the widely-anticipated regulation was just around the corner, but this may not be the case. As Kansspelaanbieders said earlier this year, it may take at least a year and a half before international operators are allowed to start legal operations in the Netherlands.