Malta Gaming Authority Acts on Stakers

Another European gambling jurisdiction has taken action against online betting company Stakers Limited, following measures taken in the UK.

The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) has now followed the example of the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) by suspending the operating licence of Stakers Limited, which runs the site. Announcing its decision in an official statement issued earlier this week, the MGA said that it was implementing an immediate suspension of the Stakers licence, which would ban the operator from taking any further bets or offering gambling service under its MGA licence:

“Stakers Limited is thus no longer authorised to carry out any gaming operations, register new players or accept new customer deposits, but is required to retain and provide all registered players with access to their player accounts, and to refund all funds standing to the credit of players in line with the applicable law.”

Earlier this month, the UKGC took the step of bringing in an interim suspension of the UK licence of Stakers, detailing what it described as a number of issues associated with compliance. The suspension was brought in under the Gambling Act 2005, sections 116 and 118.

In its own statement on the enforcement action, the UKGC outlined that the suspension came because Stakers was considered to be unsuitable to continue offering licensed services. As a result, the operator’s licence was placed under review.

In their response, Stakers have criticised the UKGC’s decision through its website. They have also asked Stakers customers to complete a petition which mentions the recent description of the UKGC by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) as ‘not fit for purpose.’ The firm, which is based in Switzerland, also said that all player funds are protected and secure. But the action taken against Stakers is another example of the increasing determination of regulators in the European gambling sector to clamp down on what they see as breaches of the rules.

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