On December 2nd, 2014 the Office of National Drug and Money Laundering Control Policy held a training session which was led by Alan Pedley and Tony Clarke of Gaming Associates, International Gaming Consultants. Gaming Associates is a worldwide consulting group which provides leading expertise in the gaming and interactive waging industry. They are considered one of the world’s leading consulting group working with government regulators, internet systems vendors, internet systems operators and investors.
The training was coordinated by the Director of the ONDCP, Lieutenant Colonel Edward Croft, who recognized the need for the Agency to keep abreast of the constant changes in criminal tactics and the various methods in which gaming/gambling can be used to commit money laundering and the financing of terrorism. In his opening remarks, Lt. Col Croft highlighted the importance of furnishing officers with the knowledge and necessary tools to facilitate continued efforts in the fight against money laundering and the financing of terrorism. In keeping with this, the training aimed to create a greater awareness to the officers of AML/CFT vulnerabilities as it relates to Gaming and the online gambling industries.
The session highlighted various topics. Some of which include:
- Identifying what gambling is and Understanding why it needs to be regulated,
- Understanding the Rules of Game,
- Understanding the methods of calculating the Probability of winning,
- Understanding the concepts surrounding Sports betting,
- Understanding how Probability of payouts from Slot Machines,
- Identifying Peer to Peer transfers at Table Games,
- Understanding the inner workings of Casinos, and
- Understanding the E-commerce and Interactive Gambling vulnerabilities.
The topics focused on emphasizing various issues that the gambling industry presents in relation to AML/CFT policies. It was observed that there are some concerns relating to the reporting level of companies, and the need for Compliance Officers in the industry to have a greater appetite for detecting suspicious activity. The discussion highlighted the importance of gambling regulation and governance due to the risks the business creates, specifically with its presence in Antigua & Barbuda. Director Croft expressed satisfaction with the success of the training and stated that participants can look forward to similar courses in the near future, which are geared towards the continued development of the Officers.