The UK Gambling Commission claims that Ladbrokes betting company misled it while probing the Black Dave case. The commission further stressed the need to exercise great caution while confronting Rule #4 deductions in the horse racing by the bookmakers.
The lead trainer, David Evans, was fined a year ago by the ruling body of the horse race. This was due to the fact that he delayed notifying a non-runner, Tango Sky so that he could support his acquaintance, Black Dave as should have been the case. This should have happened before the odds shortened. He informed Ladbrokes of his intention to pull out Tango Sky moments after placing his bet.
This, the gambling commission argued, constituted a breach of trust. This, it argued, was not only unethical but also goes against the goodwill that ought to exist between the companies and the customers.
Throughout the probe, Ladbrokes maintained that it was unaware of why it had to shorten the odds of Tango Sky as soon as Evans had placed his bet. This notwithstanding, the Commission received tangible proof that it did so in order to leverage the deductions of Rule #4.
This it did supposedly to prevent Evans from winning the bets that had already been placed. The Commission further claims that Ladbrokes did not review all the information available to it thoroughly before providing those inaccurate explanations.
Notwithstanding these glaring discrepancies, Ladbrokes managed to escape the consequences. This was alleged because those actions did not constitute a breach of the commission’s licensing conditions or codes of conduct. The case also occurred way before the public statements of the gambling commission as regards the fair application of Rule #4.
As an acknowledgment of its initiative to point out the case to the racing regulator on the material day of the race, Ladbrokes was credited. The firm, it is understood, saved £7.70 by shedding off Tango Sky’s price in what was considered a weak race for a turnover.
In response to this misfortune, the gambling commission has now stipulated new regulations which it requires all the betting firms to apply the Rule #4. Most betting officials are however pessimistic about these new regulations.
A Ladbrokes Coral statement had this to say:
‘We initially interpreted what transpired when the price was altered to be inaccurate. This is a fact that became very clear when we examined the finer details.’
The statement further added:
‘Shortening the Tango Sky’s odds was inconsistent with its trading policy at that particular time. This action has since made it known to the traders that markets have to be suspended immediately such issues arise in future.’
The gambling commission has further insisted that betting companies must factor what transpired in the Black Dave case and subsequent reactions of Ladbrokes. It also reminded the players that the long-term viability of the sector is greatly hinged on the customer trust.
Further to that, the gambling watchdog insisted that it would continue monitoring the situation and if called for, exercise the formal regulatory powers on the specific bookmaker and the entire gambling industry.
In response to these sweeping measures, the bookmaker had these to say:
‘Our initial understanding of what unfolded at the time the price was altered was not right. We only learned of this though when the case was examined in details. Moreover, the company also explained that Tango Sky’s price reduction was not in line with its trading policy at that particular time. It had also warned its traders of the same. ’
In light of these developments, the UK gambling industry is expected to undergo spectacular transformations. It will be interesting to see just how far-reaching these developments shall go.