Ed Miliband declares war on ‘crack cocaine’ gaming machines that allow punters to gamble £300 a minute

Posted on December 23, 2013 by admin

David Cameron was under increasing pressure to stop the spread of fixed-odds betting terminals last night.

Labour leader Ed Miliband announced plans to give councils the power to ban the gambling machines, which have been dubbed the ‘crack cocaine of the high street’.

Mr Miliband admitted Labour, which allowed the creation of the machines in the 2005 Gambling Act, had ‘changed our mind’, following widespread concern that the machines are addictive for problem gamblers.

Read the full article in The Daily Mail online.

Ed Miliband promises crackdown on betting shop ‘epidemic’

Posted on December 20, 2013 by admin

Ed Miliband will widen his attack on “predatory” capitalism on Friday by promising new laws to control the spread of bookmaking shops and betting machines.

Read the full article in The Financial Times online.

Ed Miliband: Roulette machines ’cause debt and misery’

Posted on December 20, 2013 by admin

Ed Miliband says fixed odds betting machines are behind a “gambling epidemic” in parts of the country.

The Labour leader vowed to give councils the power to ban the machines from bookmakers’ shops if his party wins the next election.

He said: “It causes debt and misery for families and is a magnet for crime and anti-social behaviour.”

Watch the video on BBC News online.

Labour fails to secure bookies’ roulette machine rethink

Posted on December 6, 2013 by admin

Labour has failed in an attempt to force ministers to restrict the stakes and prizes on roulette machines in bookmakers shops.

MPs voted to back a government decision to keep the maximum punters can bet per spin at £100.

Read the full story on BBC Online.

James Duddridge MP’s gambling law relaxation

Posted on November 15, 2013 by admin

An MP has faced a backlash after he spoke in parliament calling for gambling laws to be relaxed.

James Duddridge, MP for Rochford and Southend East, who is scrutinising a new gambling bill currently passing through the Commons, called for casinos to be allowed to offer online gambling on site.

But he has been slammed by critics and political opponents for ignoring the problems associated with gambling.

Read the full article in The Southend Standard online.

Ladbrokes accused over child gamblers and criminality

Posted on November 12, 2013 by admin

Britain’s biggest bookmaker warned staff not to mention the words “children”, “smashed” and “money laundering” in company documents for fear of exposing the scale of underage gambling and criminality in betting shops, a former company executive has said.

Paul Pearce, who was with Ladbrokes for 48 years and worked in the security team overseeing 2,000 shops from the company’s London headquarters, contacted the Guardian after the paper’s investigation into how high street betting shops were being used to launder drug money.

Read the full article in The Guardian online.

The gambling machines helping drug dealers ‘turn dirty money clean’

Posted on November 11, 2013 by admin

Dressed in a grey hoodie and jeans, James, 24, looks like just another lost soul in the high street, shuttling between the six betting shops in an east coast seaside town. It’s a weekday morning and if you catch up with him inside a bookmaker, you’ll find him peering intently into the green glowing screen of an electronic gambling machine – feeding in £200, “a score at a time”.

But this is not a young gambler blowing his meagre wages. James is a drug dealer and his interest in the bookmakers – and the fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs) in each shop – is all about laundering money. “That’s what turns dirty money clean,” he says. Dealers feed their drug money through the machines, losing a little and then cashing out with the vast majority of their stake, James says. They can then collect a printed ticket showing they have gambled that day – meaning that if stopped by police, they can answer questions about why an apparently unemployed young man carries hundreds of pounds in rolled-up cash.

Read the full article in The Guardian online.

Simon Read: Payday lenders are in denial over targeting advertising at children

Posted on November 11, 2013 by admin

You might assume that payday lenders are very thick-skinned, especially given their robust defence of their activities before a committee of MPs this week. But it seems there are some activities with which even they don’t like to be linked. Specifically, they took umbrage after being accused of “grooming” children.

Payday-loan mouthpiece Russell Hamblin-Boone of the Consumer Finance Association, who was one of those dragged in front of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Tuesday, said: “It is irresponsible and wholly inappropriate to suggest that lenders are deliberately targeting children for any purpose.”

Read the full article in The Independent online.

Liverpool first city to ban high-speed betting machines

Posted on November 8, 2013 by admin

High-speed betting machines on which punters can lose thousands of pounds in minutes will be outlawed in Liverpool, making it the first UK city to first their use.

Read the full article in The Independent i.

City wants ban on ‘crack cocaine’ betting machines

Posted on November 8, 2013 by admin

A council has demanded a ban on electronic betting machines – dubbed the crack cocaine of gambling – because of the growing problem of addiction.

Read the full article in The Daily Mail.