Online casino operator LeoVegas has won its appeal against the gambling regulator of Sweden after a protracted legal battle dating back to last November.
The appeal was heard in the Swedish Administrative Court in Linkoping, where LeoVegas argued that it should not have been penalised by the Swedish gambling regulator Spelinspektionen for an incident of violating the gambling regulations in the UK, a separate gambling jurisdiction.
The dispute arose last November when Spelinspektionen issued the company with a license to operate in the newly-privatised Swedish gambling industry. LeoVegas was one of the first operators to earn a Swedish license, but along with two other operators, Casumo and Bwin, it was awarded a two-year license rather than a five-year approval.
At the time, the Swedish regulator argued that the shorter license length was appropriate as the company had been found guilty of violating UK gambling regulators earlier in the same year.
That decision related to a ruling by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) in May 2018, which found that LeoVegas had engaged in misleading advertising policies and that they had not done enough to stop self-excluding gamblers from using the LeoVegas site, fining them £600,000.
But in its appeal against the decision, LeoVegas pointed out that the breaches of UK guidance had occurred in 2016 and that it had taken a number of steps since then to bring its practices into full compliance with UK law. In the case of the Swedish market, the company has also set up a separate department known as LeoSafePlay, which has the responsibility to promote responsible gambling, employing machine learning and other tools.
It is not yet clear what implication this decision will have on the licenses of Bwin and Casumo, and the Swedish regulator has expressed an intention to challenge the appeal findings.