Swedish regulator Spelinspektionen has appealed a decision by a Swedish court to reduce penalties against Genesis Global and Aspire Global’s AG Communications, claiming that the decision was of “decisive importance” to its ability to issue appropriate penalties in general.
The same court also dismissed Betway’s appeal against a Spelinspektionen penalty.
Both the Aspire and Genesis cases involved the self-exclusion tool Spelpaus, which all operators had to use. Genesis received a warning and a penalty fee of SEK4m (£329,600/€382,000/$431,900) in March 2019 for failing to connect to Spelpaus for 33 days.
Aspire, which operates sites such as Karamba, got a fine of SEK3 million for failing to connect for nine days.
The penalties, in this case, were based on both the seriousness of the offences involved and the annual turnover of the licensee who committed an infringement, as specified by Swedish law.
However, both operators appealed the decisions to the Linköping Court of Appeal. It then reduced the penalties to SEK2 million and SEK1.5 million, respectively.
Both operators then appealed the rulings to the Jönköping Court of Appeal.
While the court agreed that the offences were serious, it objected to Spelinspektionen’s method of calculating the penalty.
The court stated that the regulator may impose penalties based on turnover in general. But, it also noted that these cases occurred very soon after the Swedish market opened.
As a result, Spelinspektionen calculated annual turnover based on the operator’s turnover for only January and February 2019. Both operators claimed that this resulted in inaccurate figures. And because Spelinspektionen did not present evidence to the contrary, the court reduced each penalty to SEK1 million.