Money laundering is a new concern for many gambling licensors and other government officials in 2017. In Macau and South Africa, concerns over money laundering have led to serious investigations. So what is money laundering and why is it such a big deal? Read on to find out more about this debateable topic.
Money Laundering and Casinos
For as long as there have been land-based casinos, there have also been ties to illegal actions. In Nevada, almost every casino on the Las Vegas strip had ties to organised crime. While that is no longer true, there are still allegations of misdeeds in the casino industry. However, in the iGaming sphere, there are many illegal online casinos that are used to launder funds or to trick players out of their cash.
Money laundering, by definition, means concealing the origins of ‘illegally obtained money’ by transferring the funds through electronic services. The laundering part of this arrangement is when people ‘transfer’ the money through legal ventures like casinos.
Money Laundering as Gambling Crimes
The legalities of running a land-based casino differ from country to country. However, in New Zealand, the regulations in place require any online casinos to be licensed overseas. Overseas regulators such as the UK Gambling Commission or Malta Gaming Authority have strict policies when it comes to casino banking.
This is, in part, why many online casinos are safe for Kiwi players to gamble with real money. However, some online casinos are not licensed, so finding a reputable online casino is vital. On the other hand, land-based casinos are a bit trickier to regulate. Since foreign operators can bid for real estate in territories such as Macau, keeping track of them is difficult. This is partly being combated by the Chinese government through inspecting the operations of junket operators.
Money Laundering by Junket operators
Junket operators in land-based casinos attract and deal with high rollers, or VIP gamblers. However, some could be toeing the line between legal and illegal for their clients. This is partly because money laundering and VIPs go a long way back. That is not to say that all junket operators and gamblers are acting illegally. More so, this is why officials for different nations are struggling to pass or regulate casinos.
Overall, concerns about illegal operations could lead to the closure of some online casinos. Or some casino operators in popular destinations like Macau or the United Kingdom. For the most part, this shouldn’t impact Kiwi players at licensed and regulated online casinos. So keep an eye out for licensed software providers and online casinos to help you stay on the right side of the law.