Loophole for Online Poker in Australia

Published Saturday, May 02, 2009 - Online-Casinos.com

Down Under as it is called by many in Australia is still having it's fair share of legal troubles when it comes to the fast evolving online gambling industry. The big British online wagering company Ladbrokes is offering Australian players a go at it's internet poker tables that are based in Gibraltar. This action is illegal according to the laws of Australia.

The firm wants to make a bid for a state of Victoria's wagering licence but at present the company is pushing the buttons of lawmakers enticing those would be gamblers in Australia to play on the web.

The Interactive Gambling Act, of 2001, prohibits a company in Australia or offshore to provide online casino games to any person who is "physically present in Australia". When questioned about the practice of playing poker for money on the net a Ladbrokes spokesperson stated, "We have no legal restrictions for customers playing from Australia and I can confirm that you are able to use any of our online facilities."

Ladbrokes could face potential fines of up to $1.1 million per day, should they be brought to task for their conduct. The Productivity Commission is reviewing the law which is thought to be a useless law mainly because Australian authorities cannot extract fines from offshore operators. In fact the government does not bother trying to prosecute offshore firms that breach the legislation.

Stephen Conroy, Communications Minister, had a spokesperson say that concerns about online gambling web sites were dealt with by the Australian Communications and Media Authority.

Last January Ladbrokes in London said it was interested in bidding on the lucrative $750 million TAB betting licence in Victoria that will come up for tender in 2012. Opponents to the idea of online gambling in Australia such as Interchurch Gambling Taskforce chief Mark Zirnsak, stated, "If they have this level of disregard for Australian law, then they are not a fit company to be holding a wagering licence in Victoria,"

Other online casinos and betting companies also disregard the laws in Down Under. It's estimated that $300 million is spent by Australians every year on online casino sites.

Related news

Return to Latest News