UK Casino News: Grosvenor Cheats, Tennis Gambling Scandal & DraftKings UK

Latest UK gambling news

Casino criminals such as Ozgur Aytekin, shady tennis umpires and the launch of DraftKings UK defined this week’s UK gambling news. (Image: met.police.uk)

In UK casino news this week there’s been tales of light-fingered poker players in London, another twist in the tennis gambling scandal and the emergence of a new player in the sports betting market.

In the wake of the chip stealing scandal at London’s Cromwell Mint, another UK casino has found itself dealing out a round of justice to a group of poker cheats.

Back in April of 2014 a group of five men, including Ozgur Aytekin, Murat Kolcak, Ali Kuyar, Ergun Yasar and Tarik Nergiz, all started playing three card poker inside London’s Grosvenor Casino on Edgware Road.

Initially the casino was unsuspicious of their actions, but after observing the men for two weeks the security team found evidence of cheating.

Underhanded Poker Moves

Because the aim of three card poker is to beat the dealer’s hand, players are allowed to look at their cards in secret before folding or increasing their original bet.

Working as a team, the players would then swap cards while the dealer wasn’t looking in order to improve the value of their hands.

In total the casino was able to pick out 32 instances of card swapping over a nine day period and calculated the gang profited to the tune of £33,600.

Hearing the case on Tuesday, a judge at the Old Bailey took into account three of the group’s guilty pleas and handed Aytekin, Kolcak and Kuyar suspended sentences and community service orders

As for Yasar and Nergiz, the former will be sentenced on February 17, while the latter failed to appear in court and a warrant is now out for his arrest.

Tennis Gambling Scandal Twist

The match fixing scandal that’s currently rocking the professional tennis world took another turn this week after it emerged that three umpires had been suspected of gambling infractions last year.

The issue, which was brought to light by the BBC, involves various match officials and players unfairly influencing the action in order to help contacts making in-play bets courtside.

So far the investigation has pointed a spotlight on both tennis and the gambling industry and earlier this week three more officials were placed under suspicion.

Investigating the case further, The Guardian newspaper found that three umpires were stripped of their credentials in 2014 after suspicions were raised about their gambling activities.

Denis Pitner of Croatia, Kirill Parfenov of Kazakhstan and Morgan Lamri of Turkey were all sacked as umpires last year; however, the story was kept under by the International Tennis Federation’s Tennis Integrity Unit.

However, after investigating the case, The Guardian found that all three were banned from umpiring after they were shown to have either gambled on games they were officiating or acted in a way that may have helped those that were gambling.

DraftKings UK Launch

There was one positive piece of news for the UK gambling industry this week and that was the launch of Fantasy Sports Site, DraftKings. The site, which has become a major player in the US market, was granted a licence to operate in the UK back in August 2015.

However, following regulatory issues in some US states, the company pushed back its launch date to ensure the “product was right.”

That period of assessment is now over and it was announced this week that DraftKings UK would go live on February 12.

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