Lithuania delivers warning to illegal operators

Lithuania delivers warning to illegal operators

Tuesday, January 5, 2016 Totally Gaming
Online gambling regulations were introduced on January 1

Lithuanian authorities have warned that they will take “take strict legal action” against gambling operators and financial institutions that flout new gaming laws.

The Lithuanian Gaming Control Authority (LGCA), which is part of the Ministry of Finance, delivered the threat after the Gaming Law came into effect on January 1, 2016. The law regulates online gambling in the country for the first time and requires that any web-based operator must also have a branch office and open a certain number of real-life gambling establishments in Lithuania.

The LGCA told TotallyGaming.com that, so far, just one company has applied for a licence in the European Union Member State – although requests were only allowed after January 1.

Virginijus Dauksys, director of the LGCA, added in a statement: “These changes to regulation have been widely publicised and will be strictly legally enforced. Gaming operators need to be licensed to operate in the Republic of Lithuania.”

The LGCA said that it will take severe action to limit Lithuanian customer’s transactions and payouts of winnings from/to illegal gambling sites. Banks and other financial institutions, including all payment providers, operating in Lithuania are under legally binding orders to prevent all payments and credit related to participation in illegal gambling.

The Gaming Law also prohibits operators from offering gifts to players after they participate in gambling activities, and it is illegal for them to organise contests, lotteries, trial bets and other activities outside their websites or land-based property.

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