Tabcorp faces licence review over ‘Piegate’

16 April 2018

The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has issued Tabcorp with a fine of £84,000 (€97,100/$119,700) for its role in the English FA Cup football ‘Piegate’ case.

In February 2017, Tabcorp, trading as Sun Bets in the UK, offered novelty betting offs of 8/1 that Sutton United goalkeeper Wayne Shaw would eat a pie during the team’s FA Cup clash with Arsenal.

Shaw proceeded to eat a pie towards the end of the game, thus meaning that Sun Bets had to pay out to punters who had wagered on the bet.

However, Shaw was later banned from the sport for two months by the English Football Association and also handed a fine of £375, with the national governing body saying he had been intentionally influenced a football betting market.

The UKGC has now followed up on the case with its own investigation and ruled that the Tabcorp “failed to properly manage the risks associated with novelty bets.

In addition, the UKGC found that Tabcorp allowed more than 100 self-excluded customers to open duplicate accounts and gamble.

Tabcorp will now have to pay a fine and also have new conditions attached to its UK gambling licence.

Richard Watson, programme director at the UKGC, said: “Vulnerable customers were able to gamble with Tabcorp UK, despite choosing to self-exclude; this is not acceptable.

“Gambling firms must ensure the systems they have in place are protecting their customers effectively.”

“Novelty betting markets, such as the market Tabcorp UK offered on last year’s FA Cup tie between Sutton United v Arsenal, may seem like a bit of fun but the consequences were serious – with the potential to encourage someone to commit a criminal act or breach a sports governing bodies’ rules.”

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