The BGO Group has earned the dubious distinction of being the first operator to receive a monetary fine from the UK Gambling Commission.

Earlier this week, the Commission issued a £300,000 ($387,000 USD) to the Guernsey-based operator for a series of nine “misleading” ads that ran in its website in 2015 and 2016. Casino affiliates will also be interested to know that the Commission also included 14 ads from BGO affiliates on its list of forbidden advertisements.

BGO’s troubles with the Gambling Commission are, in part, the result of a 2015 UK law that requires operators to steer clear of what the Commission defines as misleading advertising and marketing. In this case, the commissioners felt that BGO had not clearly outlined the terms and conditions for earning free bets through an unspecified promotion.

According to a report in the Telegraph, BGO had been warned about the misleading advertising by the Commission in interactions dating back to 2015. The Telegraph states that BGO continued to post the misleading ads long after their first set of warnings and even continued to do so after commissioning an auditor’s report to help alleviate the problem.

Paul Hope, programme director at the Gambling Commission, seemed ready to use BGO as an example of what happens when you ignore warnings saying:

We want operators to take note that the issues identified in the decision notice are likely to form the basis for future compliance assessments and could lead to enforcement action.

Hope also recommended that other gambling operators read the Commission’s report and take heed of the story it tells.


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