William Hill was hit with a record £19.2 million ($23.6 million USD) fine from the British Gambling Commission (BGC) for anti-money laundering (AML) and social responsibility failings that were described by regulators as “widespread.” The fine was spread across three William Hill-operated brands including £12.5 million ($15.3 million) for williamhill.com; £3.7 million ($4.5 million uSD) for mrgreen.com; and £3 million ($3.6 million USD) aimed at William Hill’s retail outlets.
The list of failures from William Hill is detailed in an exhaustive report from the BGC and includes a wide variety of failings. One particularly egregious case involved a customer who was allowed to blow through £23,000 ($28,000 USD) in just twenty minutes. Another case involved a customer who was allowed to place a £19,000 ($23,000 USD) single wager without a check on the source of the money.
Andrew Rhodes, Gambling Commission chief executive commented on William Hill’s record-breaking bad day saying, “When we launched this investigation the failings we uncovered were so widespread and alarming serious consideration was given to licence suspension.
“However, because the operator immediately recognised their failings and worked with us to swiftly implement improvements, we instead opted for the largest enforcement payment in our history.”
Williams went on to warn other operators that the BGC is very much on the job and sniffing out offenders adding, “In the last 15 months we have taken unprecedented action against gambling operators, but we are now starting to see signs of improvement. There are indications that the industry is doing more to make gambling safer and reducing the possibility of criminal funds entering their businesses.”