UK Gambling Commission starts eSports enforcement with two arrests

UK Gambling Commission starts eSports enforcement with two arrests

Tuesday, September 20, 2016 Posted by Andy McCarron
With a charge around inviting children to gamble, the esports sector is on high alert

The esports industry is awaiting the development of a criminal case regarding the promotion of betting on esports regarding a set of promotions back when the sector was in its infancy and checks and balances were few and far between.

News broke earlier this week that a pair from Essex have been charged by the UK Gambling Commission for charges related to promoting betting on video games via YouTube channels.

Dylan Rigby and Craig ‘NephentheZ’ Douglas were both charged for advertising unlawful gambling whilst Douglas, whose history includes making videos for the FutGalaxy Youtube channel, has also been charged with ‘inviting children to gamble’. In addition Rigby has been charged with the ‘provision of facilities for gambling’.

FutGalaxy is a betting site focused on FIFA which is no longer accessible in the UK. The court case has been adjourned until 14th October at Birmingham Magistrate’s Court, and much of the esports world and betting industry alike will be interested to see what punishment is dished out.

This crackdown follows a recently published paper by the UK Gambling Commission on esports betting, amongst other forms of social gaming, and sets a worrying precedent for other Youtubers in a similar space to that which FutGalaxy operated in.

This case echoes a similar recent one over in the States involving Trevor ‘TmarTn’ Martin and Tom ‘Syndicate’ Cassell, the pair were somewhat scandalised following the revelation that they were the co-owners of a betting site (CS:GO Lotto) that they regularly promoted on their popular Youtube channels.

Rigby and Douglas are highly unlikely to be the last charged on these shores as the UKGC looks to get a handle on esports and underage gambling. Valve’s cease and desist letters opened the floodgates, and the more attention of this type that esports as a whole receives, the better for both those at risk and the industry itself long term.

The FutGalaxy site remains operational for those outside the UK, and with FIFA 17 set to be released by the end of this month, it will doubtless gather some considerable traffic from other regions.

Totally Gaming says: This will not be the final case of this nature that we see involving gambling and gaming following the UKGC report. Rigby and Douglas may also end up being used to make a point about the tough stance the Commission takes with promoting and facilitating underage gambling of this form.

American Football

Nevada breaks sports betting record in 2018


Rhode Island sports handle hits $13m in first full month


Caesars launches SG-powered sportsbook in Pennsylvania

New York

NY Gaming Commission sets out sports betting regulations

Gaming Products & Services Directory

The essential directory for the gaming industry