Royal Panda - Self Excluded Player Allowed to Deposit, Account Closed and Deposits Kept
Unresolved - The UKGC has not provided the guidance necessary to make a ruling on whether or not self exclusion information should have been shared between companies.
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On 29/04/2018 I was self-excluded from LeoVegas Casino using Gamstop (the UK's national online self-exclusion scheme). Being a problem gambler, I then searched for other casinos to play at 2 months later, and found that I was able to deposit at Leo Vegas’ sister casino, Royal Panda. I was able to deposit 32 times on 29/06, 12 times on 01/07 and a further 8 times on 02/07. This totalled £2,150.00.
I was not aware of the link between these casinos until I was able to seek further help to help with my problem, at which point I was made aware that Leo Vegas and Royal Panda are owned by the Leo Vegas Group, with their systems merging during May 2018, although the takeover of Royal Panda occurred during March 2018.
I then queried this firstly with Leo Vegas, asking why as a self excluded player I was able to make over 50 deposits over a few days. The response I received was that due to my self exclusion registration being through Gamstop, they do not share this vital information with their other brands (in this case Royal Panda). If I had self excluded through the Leo Vegas website then they would have shared my self exclusion with Royal Panda.
When I queried this with Royal Panda customer support, I received the following response:
“As the funds in question were used to play Royal Panda’s online casino games, and in the interests of fairness to our other players, we are unable to offer you a refund of your deposits, or accept any responsibility for your losses. This is explained in clause 1.14 of our terms & conditions:
“There is a risk of losing money when playing for money at Royal Panda. Royal Panda has no responsibility for such losses.”
We’re sorry to see you leaving, and would like to thank you for playing at Royal Panda.
As you’ve decided to self-exclude, we thought it best to send you email confirmation of your self-exclusion for your records, along with some important advice and information relating to that.
As discussed, you have been self-excluded.”
Clearly, they have recognised that I am a self excluded player through Leo Vegas as they have now self excluded me from their website. My argument is that should I have won, and subsequently requested a withdrawal, it would have been identified that I was self excluded through Leo Vegas and my withdrawal would have been declined, and in line with UKGC guidelines I would have been refunded my deposits less any withdrawals (in this case, I had only ever deposited with no withdrawals made).
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