British bookmaker William Hill will pay a £6.2m penalty after breaching anti-money laundering and social responsibility regulations, the Gambling Commission said today.
The regulator said William Hill gained £1.2m by failing to prevent 10 customers from depositing large sums linked to criminal offences. It will now have to divest that benefit, some of which could be returned to victims, as well as paying £5m in fines.
The Gambling Commission’s executive director Neil McArthur said: “This was a systemic failing at William Hill which went on for nearly two years and today’s penalty package – which could exceed £6.2m – reflects the seriousness of the breaches.”
One customer was allowed to deposit £654,000 over nine months despite earning just £30,000 per year from their main job. Another was flagged for review by the firm’s management after paying in £653,000 over 18 months but was allowed to continue gambling for another six months.
Mr McArthur said gambling companies “have a responsibility to ensure that they keep crime out of gambling” and must be “constantly curious about where the money they are taking is coming from.”
The Gambling Commission said William Hill would appoint external auditors to review its money laundering and social responsibility policies and report its findings to the wider industry.