Germany warns off payment processors about illegal gambling

Germany warns payment processorsThe German government has been chasing down payment processors in the last months regarding their partnerships with online gambling operators.

As, Boris Pistorius, Minister of the Interior and Sport in the German state of Lower Saxony confirmed, the governing body of his state has already made one intervention regarding the activities of an unidentified payment service provider within the state’s jurisdiction. The payment processor that operates globally seems to have been warned to refrain from any interaction with online casinos in Germany which target local players.

Pistorius also added that his Ministry has been supervising whether the federal gambling treaty, that was signed in spring, is followed by the payment processors. Meaning if they abstain from every illegal gambling activity. The processors have started to comply with the government’s guidelines and the German politician believes that this is a very positive base to build on.

The German law system is moving towards the direction of prohibiting transactions between banks and illegal online gambling operators. Earlier in the year, a German court decided that banks will be obliged to recognize if their customers perform transactions coming from unauthorized gambling activities.

Lower Saxony state has focused its efforts on blocking international online casinos from operating within its boundaries. In March the state approved a temporary treaty that clearly favors online sports betting over online casinos which are still considered illegal.

The only state that online casinos are permitted, Schleswig-Holstein, has renewed the licenses that the current operators were granted in 2012. However, the rest of the states express their disagreement about the operators’ assumption that a Schleswig-Holstein’s license means entering the German market as a whole.

The regulatory framework remains blur in Germany as long as the states don’t reach a unanimous agreement about the licensing regime that they desire to implement. A solution may be feasible if the suggestion of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia will be taken into consideration. The suggestion refers to an ‘opt-in, opt-out’ status quo, meaning that the states could decide individually if they desire to permit online casinos within their jurisdiction.

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