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Israeli Supreme Court Passes Landmark Verdict on Crypto Exchanges

Niji Narayan

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Israeli Supreme Court Passes Landmark Verdict on Crypto Exchanges
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The Supreme Court of Israel has ruled that Leumi Bank cannot freeze the cryptocurrency exchange Bits of Gold’s account because of regulatory concerns.

The bank, in spite of the court ruling , still maintains its stance against dealing with the exchange. However, the ruling sets precedent for Israeli cryptocurrency firms to legally use traditional banking services in the region.

This history of the landmark goes like this:

In 2017, the Israeli Supreme Court previously ruled in favor of Leumi in a separate case against Bits of Gold, in which the bank restricted the exchange’s account on the grounds that bitcoin (BTC) transactions could not comply with the country’s anti-money laundering (AML) laws.

In 2018, however, the Israeli Supreme Court ruled that Leumi Bank could not block account transactions on the grounds that they went to BTC exchanges, purportedly “websites that execute gambling transactions.” Further, Judge Anat Baron issued a court order temporarily barring Leumi from blocking Bits of Gold’s bank account.

Judge Baron commented that since there was no indication of any AML violations over five years of exchange transactions, there are not any grounds to continue blocking Bits of Gold’s account. Baron noted, however, that the decision to issue the court order did not prevent the bank from scrutinizing the exchange’s behavior or complying with their risk management policy.

In March 2019, the Israeli Securities Authority issued its final recommendations for cryptocurrency regulations. The report includes several ideas for how to support the cryptocurrency space in the country, including the establishment of a regulatory sandbox.

Niji Narayan has been in the writing industry for well over a decade or so. He prides himself as one of the few survivors left in the world who have actually mastered the impossible art of copy editing. Niji graduated in Physics and obtained his Master’s degree in Communication and Journalism. He has always interested in sports writing and travel writing. He has written for numerous websites and his in-depth analytical articles top sports magazines like Cricket Today and Sports Today. He reports gaming industry headlines from all around the globe.

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Compliance Updates

German State of Lower Saxony Issues First Federal Payment Blocking Order

Niji Narayan

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German State of Lower Saxony Issues First Federal Payment Blocking Order
Photo Source: spokesman.com
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As a part of the efforts to drive illegal igaming business from the country’s market, the German state of Lower Saxony (Niedersachsen) has issued an international payment service provider with a blocking order. The companies have been banned from doing business with operators offering online casino, poker and lottery betting in Germany.

“[The] pressure is now on other payment providers to reorganise their businesses processes related to illegal gambling, if they have not already done so. Online casino is no trivial matter. [It is] banned by the State Treaty on Gambling and [offering such products is] a criminal offence. In the meantime, however, it remains a billion-Euro market,” Boris Pistorius, Minister for Home Affairs and Sports said.

The Niedersachsen Ministry of Interior handed the responsibility for implementing payment blocking controls. Its blocking orders are effective across all German states. The Ministry also sent warnings to a number of other payment service providers over links to illegal gambling. Some of these companies have already responded by ceasing to power transactions for offshore sites.

“The successful interactions with some payment service providers shows that our approach is quite effective,” Pistorius added.

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Compliance Updates

Spelinspektionen Cancels Swedish igaming Licence of SafeEnt

Niji Narayan

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Spelinspektionen Cancels Swedish igaming Licence of SafeEnt
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Spelinspektionen has cancelled the Swedish igaming licence of SafeEnt, a wholly owned subsidiary of Global Gaming. Spelinspektionen has discovered “serious deficiencies in the company’s operations.”

“Overall, the gaming inspectorate’s review shows that SafeEnt has violated several of the most central parts of the game law, which are aimed at protecting players against excessive gambling. For example, customers have been able to spend large amounts of money without the company having reacted to what the duty of care requires. In addition, customers have been able to play well beyond their own deposit limits,” the regulator stated.

“The examination of the company’s actions against money laundering and terrorist financing also shows serious and systematic shortcomings. The violations concern deficiencies in the company’s risk assessment and measures for customer knowledge. In addition, the review of campaigns and offers shows that SafeEnt has offered bonuses on more than one occasion and that certain offers have also been lotteries that are not covered by the company’s licence,” Spelinspektionen added.

SafeEnt has described the measures it intended to take to correct the deficiencies, but the regulator said it believes the measures “are not sufficient and notes that SafeEnt lacks understanding of important parts of the regulations that govern the operations.”

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Compliance Updates

NH Lawmakers Pass Sports Betting Bill

Niji Narayan

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NH Lawmakers Pass Sports Betting Bill
Photo Source: sunherald.com
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The New Hampshire legislature has passed the sports betting bill and heads it to the desk of Republican Gov. Chris Sununu, who has already expressed his support for the bill.

The Senate has made three amendments to the bill. The amendments made it clear that multiple online sports betting operators will be permitted in the space, but will be capped at five. It also capped the retail operators at 10.

The bill creates a subdivision of Sports Wagering within the New Hampshire Lottery Commission, which will act as the regulatory body for the industry.

The bill allows anyone over the age of 18 to wager on professional and collegiate sporting events. Gamblers will not be allowed to wager on New Hampshire colleges or collegiate sporting events in the state. It will not provide the leagues with an integrity fee and does not require operators to use official league data.

It is estimated that the industry will generate $7.5 million in tax revenue for the 2021 fiscal year and $13.5 million two years later.

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