Punters protest 12bet, 138.com, Fun88, TLCbet’s Cheltenham bonus abuse claims

138com-12bet-fun88-tlcbet-punter-complaintsThe Isle of Man-based parent company of online gambling operators 12bet, 138.com, Fun88 and TLCBet is denying that the sites have unjustly closed accounts and refused to pay winning wagers on this year’s Cheltenham racing festival.

On Friday, angry customers of the aforementioned sites reported receiving emails saying their accounts had breached the sites’ terms and conditions regarding bonus abuse and fraudulent activity. Bettors were told that their winnings had been cancelled and that their deposits would be refunded, after which the customers’ accounts would be closed.

A growing number of customers have taken to social media to refute the accusation that they’d engaged in any unauthorized activity. The bettors claimed they’d simply taken advantage of the sties’ free bet offers during the Cheltenham festival and that their requests to withdraw their winnings had been stalled long before they received emails from the sites.

On Saturday, Garth Kimber, CEO of TGP Holdings Ltd, the parent company of the four gambling sites, was quoted on Iomtoday.com defending the sites’ actions. Kimber said the company had “processed a refund of deposits, voided all bets (winning and losing) and closed” all accounts that the company’s investigation had identified as being in breach of their T&C’s.

Kimber said the “relevant authorities” had been informed of the company’s concerns and TGP was “in the process of sharing full details of the activities found to have taken place.” Kimber said TGP “regrets the time taken and effects on genuine players but is committed to upholding both our own and the industry’s integrity.”

The four betting sites hold UK Gambling Commission licenses issued to TGP Europe Ltd. The sites are also licensed by the Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission, which issued a statement on Friday saying it was “aware of the matter” but said it was standard policy not to comment on regulatory and compliance matters involving its licensees.

Kimber’s statement noted that the TGP sites had experienced “unprecedented volumes and unusual activities” during the Cheltenham festival. This year’ festival was deemed one of the most painful for UK bookmakers after a raft of favorites lived up to their reputations, with total bookie losses believed to be in excess of £60m.