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Online Casino News - June, 2009

Dutch Government Doesn't Mind Online Gambling Taxes


  Seed Newsvine

by Mira Patel, News Staff Writer

June 19, 2009

No matter how much certain government's want to protect their own land-based interests and not give online gambling "legal" status, they are ever so willing to take payments from online gambling sources, whether that be in the form of taxes or so-called fines. Nowhere has this been more evident than in the U.S., where the New York State Attorney, in particular, has been cracking down on the most well-endowed online gambling payment processors, such as Neteller, and more recently, eCheck, which was very popular with online poker players.

The latest interesting tidbit in online gambling governmental affairs took place in The Netherlands, where a thirty-three year old woman recently won a 4.3 million Euro jackpot at popular European online betting destination, Unibet. Although it is unclear as to how exactly the Dutch government has gotten involved (this isn't the first time players from The Netherlands have won sizable sums at online casinos), they are certainly getting in the middle of things this time around, launching an investigation into Unibet and its relationship with Dutch citizens.

The good news is that the lucky player will apparently get to keep her winnings. That is, of course, after she pays the Dutch government taxes amounting to over 1 million Euros. A spokesperson for the Dutch ministry said it is unlikely the player's money would be seized, but that whether or not the money was obtained legally or illegally, the tax man must be satisfied.

When all is said and done, there really isn't much the Dutch Ministry can do to Unibet other than persuade the online betting site to cease doing business in The Netherlands. With backing by the EU and European Commission, not to mention stellar accreditations, including a listing on the Stockholm stock exchange, Unibet has solid ground to stand on.

Essentially, the case appears to be more of a muscle flexing showdown that the Dutch government has taken upon itself. The fact remains that nearly 4% of Dutch citizens gamble online at sportsbooks, poker rooms and online casinos, spending an estimated 90 to 280 million euros each year.



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