As gambling is as widespread as you can imagine in a country like Australia, being the favorite pastime here, you wouldn’t expect only smooth sailing all of the time, right? Well, that certainly is not the case, as the big companies are fighting like crazy for the attention of the players, even if we’re talking about seasoned veterans and complete beginners that just want to get their feet wet and start somewhere. Ainsworth and Aristocrat may just be the 2 most popular developers that operate in Australia, this being the main reason for which they constantly battle it out with all of the weapons in the arsenal.
As giants collide while fighting for the publics attention, money and time, fallouts appear quite often, thus giving us the biggest scandals the gambling world has ever seen, at least in Australia, Here are the 3 biggest scandals of 2019, and probably in the history of Australian gambling.
Aristocrat vs Ainsworth intellectual property breach
Aristocrat Technologies, one of the biggest and most popular developers in Australia, is suing rival Aussie pokie machine supplier Ainsworth Technology for design copy of one of its most successful games. The specialized courts and government authorities involved deemed the plea competent and thus the trial will be heard at the Australian federal court.
Aristocrat filed a breach claim of intellectual property law in regards to the Lightning Link machine. The popular machine type is said to have been copied by Ainsworth without any kind of written permission or consent from Aristocrat.
Lightning Link is currently installed in casinos all around the world and even won the Land-based Product award at the Global Gaming Awards.
Aristocrat claims that popular rival Ainsworth really stole the developed technology for Lightning Link and used it in its own machines without even bothering to change some major settings.
In a public statement, issued by their spokesperson, Australian powerhouse Aristocrat said: “This case goes well beyond simple copyright infringement and concerns allegations of extensive and deliberate misappropriation of trade secrets, confidential information, and intellectual property.
“Upholding appropriate standards is part and parcel of ensuring ongoing trust in our business and industry, and is an important part of Aristocrat’s high compliance culture.”
In response, Ainsworth said: “Ainsworth will be vigorously defending the claims made by Aristocrat in these proceedings.”
The issue between the parts and their casino suppliers has been developing starting last year, at the moment in which Aristocrat took legal action in which they demanded that Ainsworth release proof on how they came across the designs, from inception to realization.
The 30,000,000 $ debt
Sometimes, people leave without paying the debt. Some other times, though, the debt is just a few tens of millions of dollars. Star Entertainment Group declares it will most definitely pursue an A$43.2m ($30.6m) debt owed by a well-known VIP player from Singapore. A regular at the casino, the businessman left without paying the humongous debt that he registered at one of the most popular brick-and-mortar casinos in Australia.
Wong Yew Choy was flown to The Star Gold Coast casino and gifted A$2m to gamble with.
After losing the ‘’welcome gift’’ from the renowned casino, the VIP player went on to lose an additional A$43.2m, but he claims that the Australian casino made important errors during his baccarat gaming session, thus insisting he will not pay the debt until the problem is resolved or at least clarified.
In addition, Wong claims that these said errors were acknowledged in writing by the casino’s Chief Operating Officer, but that is unclear under what circumstances were does declarations and admissions made. In the meantime and as a response, The Star Gold Coast casino feels it has an “extremely robust” position and is “disappointed” it had to take the matter to the Singapore High Court.
Contacted by an important daily gambling publication, a spokesperson for the Star Entertainment Group said the following: “The Star is disappointed the situation involving Wong Yew Choy has forced us to escalate the matter to the Singapore High Court.
“However, we are pursuing debt vigorously. We would not be wasting the court’s time unless we felt our position was extremely robust.”
Wong’s lawyer denied the allegations and refused to further comment on the matter.
The Illegal gambling advertisement issue
PointsBet has been fined A$20,000 ($14,300) for the posting of an illegal advertisement in New South Wales, Australia, involving gambling. Though legal as a standalone, the advertisement was not accepted and processed by the involved government bodies.
The operator was a no-contest and did not challenge the allegation, pleading guilty and stating the following: “All 40+ metro races run 2nd up to A$100 back,” if players opened a PointsBet betting account.
The NSW Betting and Racing Act officially states the terms of the offense, as being: “a gambling advertisement that offers any inducement to participate frequently, in any gambling activity.”
Australian online operator Sportsbet is not a first time offender, the same fine being applied in March when the penalty was much smaller. The second time around, the fine was incomparably steeper. The operator also was in breach of government law and local placement laws.
Liquor & Gaming Director of Compliance Operations, Sean Goodchild, has the following official announcement to make: “Betting operators have an obligation to ensure that all advertising complies with NSW laws on gambling advertising.
“Under new laws that came into effect on July 2018, wagering operators, if found guilty of promoting inducements to gamble face fines of up to $55,000 per offense and company directors can be criminally prosecuted.”