Nevada land casino operator facing regulatory problems

News on 19 May 2018

The Nevada Gaming Control Board is reportedly investigating the online activities of Reno-based land casino owner BCH Gaming, which operates the Boomtown Casino Hotel.

The Board has filed a complaint against BCH accusing it of violating the federal 1961 Wire Act and Nevada statutes by referring players to online casino sites associated with Deck Media and the notorious Affiliate Edge (formerly Club World) group, both organisations licensed in Curacao. BCH does not have a Nevada interactive gaming licence.

Details of the case which emerged this week indicate that in late 2016 BCH decided to enter the popular free-to-play online social gaming scene. Instead of setting up a dedicated enterprise it referred players via internet links to 15 distinct online gambling websites, offering them the opportunity to “play online” and/or “play even whilst away”.

The filing indicates that eleven of the fifteen sites also offer real-money online casino action…and three of these accept US players.

In return for referring players BCH allegedly received commission payments; in other words the company acted as an affiliate for the online gambling companies.

Several months after venturing into this field, the BCH activity came to the attention of the NGCB when a customer queried the legality of the BCH activity, triggering an investigation.

This reportedly revealed that BCH had left its “free-to-play” social gaming excursion almost entirely in the hands of a single employee who was found to have little, if any, understanding of Nevada gaming laws.

BCH stands accused of exercising little, if any, supervision of the employee’s digital activity on its behalf.

The penalties for this unusual way of conducting a digital business have yet to be announced.

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