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Allerdale Borough Council,
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CA14 3YJ


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27/05/2011 - Cockermouth betting shop fined for aiding illegal bets in town pub

A betting shop has been ordered to pay £5,140 for illegally assisting a Cockermouth man to run an unlicensed betting service from a pub in the town.

Yesterday (26 May) West Allerdale Magistrates heard how officers from Allerdale Borough Council’s licensing enforcement team and Cumbria Police entered the Fletcher Christian Tavern – which is opposite DSL Betting (Cumbria) Limited on Main Street – on Saturday 7 August 2010.

The officers found the pub’s licensee, John Reid, was sitting at a table on which there were racing newspapers, several DSL betting slips, a mobile phone, a cordless telephone, a £10 note, two small pens and several drinks. Mr Reid was interviewed under caution and admitted placing bets for his customers on his account with DSL. Subsequent examination of his account showed that it was marked “Agent” with a credit limit of £10,000.

Allerdale Borough Council, which prosecuted the case, explained how officers from the Gambling Commission had visited the Cockermouth premises of DSL Betting (Cumbria) Limited on a number of occasions prior to 7 August 2010 and had advised company representatives of their responsibility under the Gambling Act 2005. Particular reference was made to the fact that it is illegal for licensees/landlords of public houses to accept bets on behalf of customers.

The company was also in breach of a number of conditions of its General Betting Operating licence including a breach of the Social Responsibility Code which requires licencees to have policies and procedures in place to ensure the protection of children and vulnerable people.

The statement of accounts for Mr Reid held by DSL Betting (Cumbria) Limited were examined by technical officers from the Gambling Commission. They found that the betting patterns on his account indicated that it was being used by multiple customers and DSL should have been aware of this.

DSL Betting (Cumbria) Limited pleaded guilty to two counts: aiding and abetting the use of premises to provide facilities for betting when no appropriate licence was in force; and providing facilities for gaming not holding a licence or being exempt.

The company was fined a total of £4,500 and ordered to pay court costs of £625 and a £15 victims surcharge.

Mr Reid had previously pleaded guilty to providing facilities for betting when no appropriate licence was in force at West Allerdale Magistrates Court on 3 March 2011 – where he was fined £650 and ordered to pay costs of £75 and a victims surcharge of £15.


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0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council
Allerdale House, Workington, Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ