On Tuesday, the UKGC posted a notice warning consumers that www.betowen.com was “not licensed by the Gambling Commission despite claiming that it is on its website.” The UKGC said the issue was “of considerable concern and the Commission is taking action,” while warning customers not to deposit money with the site.
Betowen’s homepage claims that the site is operating under UKGC license 000-002515-R-183240-709. The UKGC website contains no listing for that license number.
The UKGC’s action follows a similar notice in mid-May by the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), which declared that it had “no connection with betowen.com” and any assertions to the contrary on the Betowen site were “false and misleading.”
Betowen’s ‘About Us’ page identifies it as part of the Smart Live Gaming group. On Friday, the UKGC posted a notice stating that the UKGC license issued to Smart Live Gaming’s parent company Smart TV Broadcasting Ltd had been suspended pending a suitability review. Smart Live Gaming’s website has since removed its UKGC license info but remains active under its MGA license.
The UKGC’s notice re Smart Live Gaming didn’t indicate what had prompted its interim suspension, saying only that the justification would be “kept under consideration whilst the review takes place.”
However, the UKGC’s stated belief that Smart TV was “unsuitable to carry on the licensed activities” was identical to language used in the UKGC’s 2015 suspension of the licenses of Metro Play Ltd, the operator of 666Bet and Metroplay.com.
Shortly after that suspension, word broke that Metro Play Ltd’s operators were involved in a £21m fraud and money laundering scheme, and the sites were forced into compulsory liquidation several months later.