Spelinspektionen, the Swedish gambling regulator is issuing a warning to Bet365 for offering odds on a football match that included a large number of underage players. Company officials say that the odds were posted in error, but the hard minds at Spelinspektionen were not in the mood to hear argument, no matter how reasonable, and issued Bet365 a warning and a 1 million SEK fine ($1.1 million USD).
At the heart of the issue is a March 28, 2020 training match between Kronängs IF and Mariedals IK. This otherwise obscure event would have slid past the mind’s eye completely were it not for the fact that 24 of the 34 players were under the age of 18. In Sweden, and most of the world, gambling on events involving children is strictly taboo.
Officials at Bet365, which is one of the largest and most credible gambling operators in the world, countered that the match was not billed in an underage category. They also pointed out the fact that they removed the odds immediately upon learning about the 24 underage players. Bet365 also changed its policies so that odds would not be offered on similar matches and voided all wagers for this particular match.
A representative of the company told iGamingBusiness, ““The fact that a majority of the players then turned out to be under 18 years was an unfortunate coincidence that could have occurred in any senior league at any time and which could not be foreseen.”
None of this was really enough for the folks at Spelinspektionen who were completely unmoved by Bet365’s relatively reasonable arguments and issued the fine and warning anyways.