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Using internet gambling as a means of money laundering

Online gambling was forbidden in the Netherlands until October 1, 2021. This has altered with the passing the Remote Gaming Act (also known as “Wet Kansspelen op Afstand”). It is now acceptable to gamble online through a licensed service. Approximately 800,000 Dutch individuals wager online at a cost estimated at € 500 million.(Source: ) In addition to the substantial gaming market, gambling on the internet is a popular way for people to launder money. Therefore, regulation is a good thing.

Using internet gaming as a means of money laundering

Money laundering potential abound when it comes to online gambling. Because you make it difficult to determine where money came from by using a gambling site to transmit illicit funds.

Maybe the choice that most immediately sparks the imagination is the first one. When opening a gambling account, a person is required to provide their bank account number as identification. After completing this step, the player has access to a variety of payment methods for funding their gambling account. In addition to the associated bank account, numerous additional (anonymous) payment options are also offered, including debit and credit card payments, prepaid cards, checks, and cryptocurrency. Following payment, the funds deposited into the gambling account are granted legal status. The approach outlined above is predicated on the user not using the money for real gambling, or using it only sparingly.

The player also has the option of using the funds to make wagers. In this case, the player will invest their money in games which they can collaborate closely with other players, whether it be anonymously or not. A player will intentionally lose in order to gain an advantage over another.

Using a gambling account to make payments for unauthorized transactions is the third method.

Both the supplier and the buyer of the illicit goods possess an online betting transfer account. Transferring funds across gaming accounts is a simple process that may be done between players. The seller will then get payment to their payment account from the funds on their gambling account.

One last choice has to do with the last mentioned method of operation. It is also possible to use a gambling account with an illicit supplier solely for the purpose of concealing funds from law enforcement.

The three-stage framework

One may argue that all three phases are possible with internet gaming. A person purchasing a prepaid card with cash and then funding their gambling account with the money from the card is an example from the placement phase.  A person engages in the layers phase whenever they move money across gambling accounts. By the way, this is also a method for moving value. Online gambling’s allure as a means of money laundering

There exist other factors contributing to the difficulty of discovery, which makes internet gaming a desirable means of money laundering. First off, there are a lot of transactions in the gaming industry. Furthermore, these transactions frequently have an international component.  Lastly, since gambling doesn’t involve any tangible goods, the relationship connecting input and outcome is “softer” and determining this output is more challenging.

Act on Remote Gaming (Koa)

Providers must fulfill standards in the areas of addiction treatment and consumer protection in order to be eligible for a license.

To what degree money launderers will move to the legal market is still up for debate, though. The fact that the illicit providers can give larger reward percentages and most likely have laxer regulations keeps them appealing to gamblers. Consequently, it becomes reasonable to concentrate on the illicit offer as well from the standpoint of money laundering. Sander Dekker, the Minister of Legal Protection, has committed to stepping up the oversight and compliance by the gaming authority, the supervisory agency. They can, for example, impose greater fines than previously.

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