The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement slapped the Denver-based sportsbook PointsBet with a $25,000 fine for three separate violations of the sports wagering laws in the Garden State. The regulatory body originally levied the five-figure fine in August, but it was not until this week that the Office of Attorney General Matthew Platkin provided further details on the case. The state regulatory body subsequently said on its official website it had reached a settlement with the sports betting operator regarding the fine.
One of the violations the company was found guilty of concerns pre-match wagers placed in August 2021. By rule of thumb, punters can bet on pre-match markets before a game has started. But as it turned out, the Colorado-based company accepted wagers from a customer on events that had already commenced. The punter in question placed five wagers with a combined value of $13,500 and ended up generating $28,275 in profits.
PointsBet discovered the blunder and subsequently voided the wagers, returning the punter’s original bets, the gambling regulator reported on its website. As the sportsbook explained to the regulatory body, PointsBet lacked an automated process that would enable it to adequately assess the accuracy and timing of the pre-match markets it quoted odds for.
As a large sportsbook, it took action on what it described as an “overwhelming” number of events each day. According to the Division of Gaming Enforcement, the company argued that expecting it to inspect and authenticate all markets available for each game was unrealistic from this perspective. The regulator added in its official statement that the company said the error with the pre-match wagers had resulted from communication issues between PointsBet and a third-party data feed provider.
PointsBet Took Wagers on In-State Collegiate Team and Underaged eSports Player
The second violation occurred on March 25th of last year and concerned wagers backing the Saint Peter’s Peacocks that represent the eponymous university in Jersey City. The basketball team was an underdog that went on to defeat Indiana’s Purdue Boilermakers 67-64 in an NCAA tournament game.
The issue was betting on in-state collegiate teams is contrary to state law in New Jersey but PointsBet offered a market on the Peacocks that remained live for 55 minutes. The sportsbook subsequently noticed the error and took the market down but only after two punters had already made wagers on the local basketball team. The bets totaled $60 and were consequently voided. The bookie attributed this blunder to a human error.
Finally, the third violation committed by PointsBet took place on October 29th, 2021 when the sports betting site offered wagers on an eSports contest involving the popular MOBA game League of Legends. This time around, an underage player was competing on one of the teams. As it turned out, the player did not meet the minimum legal age of 18 years old. He was 17.
PointsBet accepted four wagers to the combined amount of $1,225 before realizing its mistake and canceling them. The gaffe resulted from the fact the company did not verify the age of eSports players prior to listing its markets for video game contests. Gambling on events that involve underage contestants is understandably illegal in New Jersey. PointsBet said it now has a process in place to check the age of esports competitors. The company has yet to comment on the sanctions.