BetMGM was fined A$33,000 (US$25,000) for an inadvertent mistake made by an Australian Entain employee and an error made by Entain’s trading team. New Jersey bettors were allowed to wager on in-state collegiate games on both occasions, and that’s illegal in the Garden State.
The Rutgers University Game
The Australia-based employee created a pre-made parlay that New Jersey punters could bet on. However, he wasn’t aware that the combo bet he compiled also included a Rutgers University game.
Rutgers University is a college team from New Jersey. And betting on New Jersey college teams is not allowed at NJ bookmakers. Unfortunately, the person working for the owner of Australian bookies Ladbrokes and Neds didn’t know that Rutgers played its home games in the Garden State.
The pre-made parlay was available for eight hours. That’s the time bettors had to include it in their bet slips before BetMGM realized their mistake and removed it from their website.
However, even though only two punters included the pre-made parlay in their bet slips, wagering a total of A$40 (US$30), BetMGM had to pay the A$33,000 fine.
The Niagara University – Marist College Game
Another incident which BetMGM has been reprimanded for by New Jersey gaming authorities also involved college teams. It also involved Entain employees.
This incident took place on March 10, 2021, ten days before the Australian Entain employee made the parlay blunder. It happened during the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference tournament and involved the teams of Niagara University and Marist College.
That game was played in Atlantic City in New Jersey, so it was considered an in-state college game, meaning New Jersey punters weren’t allowed to bet on it. However, once again, Bet MGM and Entain failed to notice that.
BetMGM blamed Entain for the error, saying that it was the London-based company that checked the location of games while creating the markets. The oversight could have been avoided, as it is mandatory for the Entain trading team to manually check the location of all games. They didn’t do that.
Punters Wagered Only A$130 in Total on Both Games
Interestingly, just like the Rutgers University match, the Niagara University – Marist College game didn’t attract a lot of interest from NJ bettors too.
The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement said that in the two incidents for which BetMGM was fined, the bookmaker accepted less than A$130 in wagers. In other words, NJ bettors wagered abound A$90 on the Metro Atlantic Conference tournament game and A$40 on the Rutgers University match.
Nevertheless, BetMGM will have to pay the A$33,000 fine for accepting wagers on in-state collegiate teams. And it’s all because of a series of unfortunate events that could have been easily avoided if Entain employees checked and double-checked the betting offers and markets they were creating.
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