The Daily Telegraph

Coral owner faces inquiry in Australia

- By Laura Onita

THE owner of Ladbrokes is being investigat­ed in Australia over suspected failures to follow money laundering and terrorism financing rules.

The Australian Transactio­n Reports and Analysis Centre (Austrac) is looking at whether Entain, which also owns Coral, “has complied with its [gambling] obligation­s” under Australia’s laws.

Nicole Rose, the watchdog’s chief executive, said: “Reporting entities have a responsibi­lity to ensure they identify, assess and manage risks of money laundering and terrorism financing, develop adequate processes and devote the necessary resources to comply with their obligation­s.”

The inquiry began after an “extensive supervisor­y campaign” covering the whole bookmaking sector. Entain is the first British company to be singled out for more intensive investigat­ion but the watchdog did not rule out further action against other operators. Entain said that it was cooperatin­g with the investigat­ion.

Austrac carried out a standard assessment of its Australian business, Entain added, relating to its operations between July 2016 and June 2020. London-listed Entain controls about one sixth of the country’s online betting market.

Last month the UK’S Gambling Commission fined Entain a record £17m and warned that it could lose its licence in Britain unless it tightened up its controls. The regulator flagged several failings, following a government review of gambling laws meant to tackle addiction and prevent money laundering.

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