A 46-YEAR-OLD man from Chester has been cautioned following an investigation into the provision of illegal gambling in the city.
The unnamed man was caution- ed following an operation which centred on a licensed premises in Chester and involved officers from Chester police, the Gambling Commission and Chester City Council.
The investigation concerned suspected illegal betting on licensed premises.
In March, the Gambling Commission warned bookmakers, publicans and club officials that commercial betting is not allowed in pubs, clubs or similar licensed premises.
In this case the Commission found evidence of a low level of activity and is satisfied the caution will be effective in preventing any re-occurrence.
The Gambling Commission said no commercial betting at all, regardless of the level of stakes, is allowed in pubs and clubs.
A spokesman said: “It is not socially responsible and those who facilitate such betting in pubs and clubs – whether publicans, designated premises supervisors or club officials – are providing illegal facilities for gambling and are breaking the law.
“Even where publicans, desig- nated premises supervisors or club officials accept bets on behalf of licensed bookmakers, or just facilitate betting through their own telephone accounts, they are acting as betting intermediaries and could be prosecuted.”
The commission said licensed bookmakers who knowingly accept bets from pub customers through a single account are encouraging illegal gambling, may be in breach of the Gambling Act 2005 and could risk losing their licence.
Commenting on the operation in Chester, the commission’s director of regulation, Nick Tofiluk said: “The Gambling Commission is active in investigating illegal betting in pubs to ensure that those seeking to benefit from illegal gambling do not prosper at the expense of others.”
Cllr John Ebo, chairman of Chester City Council’s licensing board, said: “Increasingly the Chester Licensing Team are working with other agencies in all aspects of licensing enforcement, this instance being one example. Such partnership working is proving very effective and I am pleased that the work of the licensing team in Chester has been applauded by the Gambling Commission. Too often their good work goes unnoticed.”