Fairfax Media reported details of an interview with outgoing Racing Victoria integrity boss Dayle Brown claiming that offshore bookmakers use their relations with bettors to get access to their bank accounts.
Fairfax Media’s Sydney Morning Herald last week revealed that “senior members” of the Black Economy Taskforce have issued a warning urging Australian bettors not to use illegal overseas bookmakers during the upcoming sporting season.
Bookmaker List could find no official warning on the Black Economy Taskforce page or on any government-related website.
The only senior member of a Black Economy Taskforce stakeholder that commented on the issue, warning Australian players, appears to have been Dayle Brown, General Manager Integrity Services for Racing Victoria.
Brown announced earlier this month, coincidentally to the same Fairfax Media journalist that reported the Black Economy Taskforce warning, that he will be leaving his post at Racing Victoria and was now looking for challenges outside of racing.
On his way out, Brown felt necessary to inform Australian punters tempted to bet with overseas bookmakers, that “It’s all one-way traffic.”
Paraphrasing him, the illegal bookmakers will take your deposit, never pay out your winnings and then possibly even steal your bank account.
“First you commit to them and you lose your money. Then they can get access to your bank account and it becomes a disaster,” said Brown, who did not elaborate on how the bookmakers are exactly getting access to a player’s bank account, which seemed to us the most important part, if true.
Just like the Sydney Morning Herald journalist did not elaborate on one of the article’s opening quotes: “Members of the taskforce are desperately trying to interrupt the systematic use of illegal bookmakers who are turning over billions of dollars in places such as the Philippines and Vietnam.”
Probably because in reality, they are not doing anything like that.
Black Economy Taskforce
The Black Economy Taskforce has simply been entrusted by the Australian government to provide policy recommendations.
In that regard, members of the task force have been holding consultations for several months and are now expected to provide a final report to the Australian Government on the best strategies to counter black economy activities with the introduction of a new set of policies.
None of them is “desperately trying” anything, let alone to interrupt the systematic use of illegal bookmakers by Australian punters.
As a matter of fact, members of the task force ignored completely the issues around illegal betting until recently when they were advised by “betting industry insiders,” many of which happen to be online bookmakers with a long history of operating on black markets, like for example China.
Warning punters that betting with offshore-based operators provides no protections, to players that are treated unfairly, is perfectly fine.
However, for everyone that can read through the lines, the message is clear: Australian-licensed bookmakers can operate on black and grey markets overseas through sister companies, subsidiaries and joint ventures, while Chinese bookmakers are all criminals and should not target the Australian market.
That is until they start to pay taxes and fees to Australian sports and join the circus.
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