Racing Australia pushes law to stamp out illegal bookmakers

    Australian horse racing
    Australian horse racing

    Any persons involved in Australia’s racing industry who is suspected of placing a bet with an illegal operator can now have his or her phone and computer seized, under new laws pushed through by Racing Australia, local media reports.

    Persons bound by Australian racing rules includes trainers and owners, who would be subject to stiff penalties if they are found to be gambling with companies without Australian wagering licenses.

    The new law is said to combat the leakage of money out of Australia’s racing industry, which receives no race-field fees from illegal gambling operators.

    “This is simply about prohibiting participants betting with non-approved offshore wagering operators because it’s a significant risk for the industry,” said Racing Australia chief executive Barry O’Farrell.

    Betting on illegal operators limits the ability of racing integrity agencies to inquire and investigate related to those matters, he added.

    The new laws are set to come into effect on August 1.