Betway has been hit with a record £11.6m fine for failing to verify the source of its customer’s betting money as well as being socially irresponsible towards some punters.
The online gambling business was penalised by the Gambling Commission for failing to check on a “VIP” customer who spent more than £8m and lost more than half that sum in a four-year period.
The firm was also found to have failed in its social responsibility over interactions it had with a customer who lost £187,000 in just two days.
The investigation found the £5.8m that flowed through Betway due to the lack of checks could be assumed to be proceeds of crime.
The regulator said the majority of this money will now be divested and returned to victims.
Richard Watson, executive director at the Gambling Commission, said: “The actions of Betway suggest there was little regard for the welfare of its VIP customers or the impact on those around them.
“We have set tight deadlines for when we expect to see progress and if we do not see the right results then we will have no choice but to take further action.
“This case highlights again why progress needs to be made.”
UK betting companies have been fined more than £19m in the last financial year for failing to protect problem gamblers and stop money laundering.
The case against Betway is the largest fine for failing to made adequate checks.
Previous fines include online gambling firm 888 being hit with more than £7.8m in 2017 and William Hill taken to task with a fine of at least £6.2m in 2018.
Earlier this year, the Gambling Commission also banned customers from using their credit cards for betting from 14 April.
That decision sparked steep falls in the share prices of major industry players at the time of the announcement.