Entain Sued by Man Making $3k per Month for Letting Him Gamble Over $2M

Posted on: August 29, 2022, 12:28h. 

Last updated on: September 1, 2022, 03:30h.

Gaming giant Entain is going through a rough patch. On the heels of a record fine of £17 million (US$21 million) in the UK, it will now have to respond to a lawsuit that could open the floodgates to additional legal challenges.

Ladbrokes betting shop
A Ladbrokes betting shop in the UK on a rainy day. The betting company faces a new lawsuit over alleged responsible gambling failures. (Image: Alamy)

Entain, the parent company of Ladbrokes, PartyPoker, and other gaming platforms, faces accusations that Ladbrokes failed to uphold responsible gaming measures, according to The Times.

The plaintiff, Simon Rose, bet more than €2.1 million (US$2.1 million) from 2015-2016, even though he only earned around €42,264 (US$42,264) a year.

This, Rose states in his lawsuit, was Ladbrokes’ fault. The platform didn’t do enough to stop his gambling habit, even though it had the means to do so, he alleges.

‘Ladbrokes Should Have Done More’

The lawsuit claims Ladbrokes ignored problem gambling policies. Rose, at times, could spend up to €21,135 (US$21,135) per day and, ultimately, lost €271,234 (US$271,234) in seven months.

Although he was making around €3,522 (US$3,522) a month, Ladbrokes initially gave him a deposit limit of €23,481 (US$23,481). This was the first indication, according to the suit, that the platform wasn’t living up to its responsible gambling obligations.

Rose believes Ladbrokes should have done a better job monitoring his account before he ran up a huge amount in wagers. If it had, he claims, it would have contacted him and taken action sooner, including restricting the account or verifying the source of funds.

The gambler admits that Ladbrokes did contact him. But he said it happened too late. After he accumulated €117,406 (US$117,406) in losses, Rose received a call from the platform. They learned he was borrowing money to place wagers and spending beyond his means.

According to the suit, Ladbrokes didn’t do anything else. Rose then placed a weekly deposit limit of €1,173 (US$1,173) on his account and increased it without issue to €23,481 (US$23,481) only a couple of months later. Ladbrokes continued to allow Rose to bet until he self-excluded in 2016.

Entain hopes it can avoid another drawn-out court battle. It notes that Rose’s activity occurred two years before it bought Ladbrokes.

Should Rose succeed with his lawsuit, it could lead to additional legal challenges. Others who believe they didn’t receive fair treatment from Ladbrokes or other betting platforms may also seek restitution.

Entain Has Plenty of Court Experience

If it can’t avoid responding to the lawsuit in court, Entain has a lot of experience on its side. An earlier case involved the company when it was GVC.

In 2020, GVC had to respond to accusations it violated UK tax laws linked to its online gaming operations in Turkey. Around that same time, GVC became Entain.

Despite being awarded the Advanced Safer Gambling Standard from GamCare, Entain, mostly because of Ladbrokes, has faced repeated allegations of violations. Last year, for example, Ladbrokes faced allegations it coerced a user to spend more than AU$3 million (US$2.07 million) of his company’s funds gambling. That company later filed for bankruptcy.

One year earlier, New South Wales fined Ladbrokes for offering incentives to users violating established law. At the time, the AU$207,500 (US$143,465) fine was a record for the Australian state.

Last year, Entain responded to claims it allowed an established bettor to place around $3.95 million in illegal bets. Scottish bettor Terry Allan allegedly placed the bets from Spain. This would have violated local laws since Ladbrokes didn’t have a license in Spain, a requirement in the country.

As a result, Allan sought reimbursement of the entire amount, along with 8% interest. He claimed Ladbrokes allegedly knew where he was and told staff to avoid the topic of location.