Latest News
INTERNATIONAL
5/12/07/07 TO 5/19/07



Pokies take control

AUSTRALIA - The society [Gambling Impact Society of NSW] has launched its Pause off the Pokies campaign in an effort to stem the growing number of problem gamblers across Australia. More than 300,000 Australians have moderate to severe gambling problems. Only 7 per cent... Ever seek treatment services.
www.theleader.com.au / Nicholas Baker / May 17, 2007

But Opposition gaming spokesman George Souris said he was concerned by reports the system - which involves the issuing of a re-useable tickets instead of money - would harm players.

AUSTRALIA -
www.news.com.au / May 18, 2007

Gambling outfit gives up fight with bank

AUSTRALIA - Kim David Faithfull, a former branch manager... Was jailed in 2003 for stealing $18,998,309.36 from the bank. The Commonwealth Bank wanted its money back and sued IAS in 2004, later adding IAS founder Mark Read to the legal action. The bank alleged that the betting company knew that the income Faithfull got from his job with the bank could not have supported his huge betting. IAS denied the allegation. In the calendar year 2002, he bet nearly $35 million.
www.theage.com.au / Christopher Webb / May 20, 2007

$20m lost on the tables

AUSTRALIA - A CONFESSED pathological gambler lost more than $20 million in real estate as his addiction ran out of control, a court has heard. Wells claimed he was seduced by the casino with free trips and accommodation... Wells is bankrupt. Wells misappropriated $536,100 from Third Vilmar, of which he was sole director and a shareholder.
www.news.com.au / Shelley Hodgson / May 19, 2007

Nat MP should clean up own gambling backyard

NEW ZEALAND - E ... Showed Thames-Coromandel to have the fourth-highest incidence of pokie machines... "Pokie machines cause over 80% of the gambling addiction presentations to treatment agencies,
www.scoop.co.nz / 15 May 2007

Cashless pokies 'boost profits'

AUSTRALIA - Pubs say 'well-known' cashless pokies boost profits Manufacturer alleged to spruik claims of success Profits boosted by 'up to 20 per cent' ^ ^CLUBS could reap a jump in gaming profits of up to 20 per cent with the introduction of cashless poker machines, experts claim.^ A gaming manager at one of Sydney's largest hotel groups yesterday told the Daily Telegraph it was "well known" that cashless pokies to be rolled out in NSW clubs boosted profits. He said leading poker machine manufacturer Aristocrat had been spruiking the technology for several months. ... he said. "There is a brochure being handed out by Aristocrat which proves this." Aristocrat did not return calls yesterday. ... However, ... yesterday ... "This was not introduced for harm minimisation measures," Mr West said. "It reduces the amount of cash that has to be handled." However, the Daily Telegraph has obtained a copy of the Government's study into the technology, which found "(it) is the forerunner of removing some of the triggers that can compound a problem gambler's behaviour". There are 300,000 problem gamblers in Australia. Gaming Impact Society counsellor Kate Roberts said the extent of the gambling epidemic could not be measured. "We believe this technology won't help to reduce gambling addiction. It might make it easier for people to sit there and keep playing," he said. Gambling counsellors are calling for the Government to instead introduce a "smart card" which gives players the power to place their own spending limits and once exceeded, are blocked from playing the machine. The idea was recommended in 2004 by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal. However, the Government has not implemented three harm minimisation measures recommended to tackle problem gambling. The reactions of punters using new cashless poker machines at Souths Juniors have been mixed, with some seeing no benefit. However, player Hjose Fernandez, who spends about $20 a fortnight, said the machines were an "efficient" idea. See what's free at AOL.com. ...
www.news.com.au / Kate Sikora and Gemma Jones / May 17, 2007

Gambler mum sent to prison

AUSTRALIA - He jailed a mother of three for stealing more than $137,000 from her employer. "I've seen many tragedies as a result of gambling,
www.sunshinecoastdaily.com.au / RAE WILSON / 5.05.2007

NSW to roll out 'cashless' pokies

AUSTRALIA - But Sydney University's head of psychology Alex Blaszczynski said changing to the machines [cashless] would not deter pokie addicts.
www.news.com.au / May 15, 2007

Gaming probe kept secret

AUSTRALIA - A REPORT revealing the number of gambling addicts is double the State Government's own estimates remains secret, a year after it was completed. University of Adelaide and Flinders University think-tank has found three per cent of the community are problem gamblers. IGA director Robert Chappell said the report had been sitting on his desk for a year and the authority was not ready to release it.
www.stjoenews-press.com / May 20, 2007

Public denied information on gaming licences

AUSTRALIA - THE public will not be shown basic information about a review into the state's new multibillion-dollar lotteries and gaming licences because it is too "secret", Victoria's gambling watchdog has ruled. The refusal to release any information relating to the gambling licence review comes as the Government surrenders thousands of documents to the parliamentary committee on gaming licensing.
www.theage.com.au / Jason Dowling / May 20, 2007

CANADA - "Canadians lost $14.5 billion gambling in 2006," without getting anything in return. The Canada Safety Council called addictive gambling "a public health crisis," saying it accounts for up to 360 suicides a year... It's estimated that 35 per cent of Ontario's over $5 billion in gambling revenue came from "problem gamblers," Nova Scotia introduced a system to track gambling-related suicides and found 6.3 per cent of suicides were related to problem gambling.
Gambling fuelled by government greed / Editorial / May 15, 2007

CANADIAN PROBLEM GAMBLING SURVEY PLANNED

CANADA - British Columbia is commissioning a new study on problem gambling, "The last survey... Showed 4.6 percent of the British Columbia population could be considered problem gamblers.
www.online-casinos.com / Online-Casinos.com / May 14, 2007

Problem gambling...

CANADA - The diapers... Are made of six layers of cotton and micro-fibre, dry in an hour, are reusable... They are a perfect fit for "gamblers at all-night casinos,"
www.wellandtribune.ca / May 14, 2007

Gut-check time for fantasy league junkies

CANADA - One in 10 Canadians regularly plays fantasy sports, according to a 2006 Ipsos-Reid poll. That means three million of us can probably identify with Mr. Harris, who has managed as many as eight teams at once. In all, nearly 20 million North Americans have signed up for some sort of league... In a little more than a decade, fantasy leagues have become a billion-dollar industry. Mr. St. Amant wrote a book about his fixation, Committed: Confessions of a Fantasy Football Junkie, but his experience is hardly isolated. Last year, a team of sociologists at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas who specialize in gambling addictions studied fan-tasy baseball league partici- pants. They found that many GMs, in their obsessive quest for first place, demonstrated six characteristics used to identify pathological gamblers: excessive thinking about the game; needing more when less used to do the trick; inability to stop or cut back; irritability when stopping; playing to get away from problems and developing problems with family, school or work.
www.theglobeandmail.com / Globe and Mail / PATRICK WHITE / May 15, 2007

Lotteries are a problem but don't blame charities

CANADA - Lotteries disproportionately exploit the poor. They can lead to more serious forms of problem gambling. Ethically speaking, lotteries suck...even if the clerk who sold the ticket doesn't steal your winnings.
www.thestar.com / Ken Gallinger / May 19, 2007

For our own good

CANADA - Organized crime can be a handy scapegoat for hunting up new revenues. If you think back to 1991, you might remember that the provincial minister of finance of the day, Hubert Kitchen, argued that the province had to introduce video-lottery terminals (VLTs) to bars, because "organized crime" had been operating grey-market gambling machines in some bars.
www.thetelegram.com / The Telegram / EDITORIALS / 17/05/07

Lottery needs shakeup

CANADA - With a scandal continuing to brew over the disproportionate number of lottery retailers claiming lottery winnings, police have finally been called in to examine how the wins were achieved. Their success rate was 10 times higher than statistically probable over the past six years. A report by Ontario's ombudsman, Indicated that Ontario's lottery corporation paid out millions over the past eight years to at least 247 dishonest retailers.
thechronicleherald.ca / ROGER TAYLOR / 5-17-07

VLT addiction ends in prison sentence

CANADA - "I had a $500 watch on me and I would sell it for $25," Over 13 years, Baldwin [62] estimates she lost about $600,000. Baldwin held up a fast-food restaurant in 1999 with a toy gun... Hoping to be shot and killed by police. In September 2006, Baldwin robbed the Scotiabank in Amherst.
www.cbc.ca / CBC News / May 16, 2007

State guilty of discriminating

CZECH - Foreign online gambling companies are betting they're onto a Czech business jackpot because government officials will never be able to stop their Internet activities run from abroad. ECJ's rulings for free movement of capital-stating an online betting firm licensed in its home European Union country may do business in all EU markets-are music to his ears.
www.cbw.cz / Irena Fukov / 4. 05. 2007

Kick the habit...

INDONESIA - Going by a survey conducted by a Canadian university, adolescents are two to four times more likely than adults to have problems with gambling. The International Centre for Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviours at McGill University also found that young people with serious gambling problems are more likely to kill themselves. With NCPG's support, MCYC developed the Youth Gambling Prevention Roadshow to educate the young on problem gambling.
newpaper.asia1.com.sg / Teh Jen Lee / May 19, 2007

Indp. wants State-backed child gambling outlawed

IRELAND - A BAN on children under the age of 18 years betting with the State run tote is the single issue platform on which Knockboy man, Francis Hennessy is contesting next week's general election. He discovered that the reason Ireland had the highest number of compulsive gamblers pro rate in Euurope was that we were "breeding them as infants at dog tracks and race tracks all over the country."
www.waterford-news.ie / Marion O'Mara / May 18, 2007

Lottery system crashes after deluge of sales

JAPAN - Tokyo - Japan's lottery agency on Tuesday suspended sales in a soccer betting competition after the system crashed on a deluge of people seeking to win. Japan has few legal betting venues other than horse-racing, although its thousands of noisy "pachinko" pinball parlours are seen as a thinly disguised form of gambling.
www.iol.co.za / May 15, 2007

Japanese fear erosion of morals

JAPAN - A baby who suffocated, allegedly after being stuffed by his parents in the baggage compartment of a motorbike while they went gambling. The baby died after his parents allegedly left him in the baggage hold of a motorbike while they gambled at a pachinko pinball parlor.
www.stltoday.com / THE ASSOCIATED PRESS / Hans Greimel / 05/19/2007

Macao hit by growing pains

CHINA - The rapid expansion of the casino business is making life tough for working-class residents. The two dozen gambling houses and luxury hotels have ignited an economic boom in this territory of half a million residents... But working-class citizens say the 60% rise in gross domestic product and the glamour and lucre of the casino industry have brought corruption and inflation, pushing the cost of housing and necessities out of the reach of their paychecks. They say the swelling ranks of illegal migrant laborers from the mainland, estimated to constitute nearly a third of the workforce, have suppressed wages. Inside the opulent halls, visitors gamble the Chinese way - on higher stakes tables, not slot machines. Outside, however, many locals fear that unbridled development is erasing the charm and character of Macao's history. "Macao's prosperity is built on the bankruptcy of many people. "Of course I don't have enough," said Wong, 59, who has an estranged daughter who gambled her savings away and fled to China. "My family needs to eat," she said. "Even groceries are more expensive now.
www.latimes.com / David Pierson / May 17, 2007

Macao police nab casino staff "stealing chips"

CHINA - The Macao police have apprehended a casino staff who allegedly stole gaming chips worth... (85,625 U.S. dollars)
english.people.com.cn

Roadshow games help change perceptions

SINGAPORE - But the Methodist Children and Youth Centre said more needs to be done to educate young people in Singapore on the dangers of gambling.
newpaper.asia1.com.sg / May 19, 2007

Council votes against racino telephone survey

NOVA SCOTIA - Council... Voted overwhelmingly against a proposal to hold a telephone survey to determine public support... Such a survey is required by the provincial government before the effort can proceed.
trurodaily.com / The Truro Daily News / HARRY SULLIVAN / 18/05/07

Gambling Problems Outweigh Charity Money: PGFNZ

NEW ZEALAND - The Problem Gambling Foundation says the $300 million worth of community grants from legal gambling does not make up for the social costs of the problem.
www.newswire.co.nz / 13 May 2007

Trust may challenge report clearing casino

NEW ZEALAND - A group defraud of $750,000 by a problem gambler may challenge a report that clears Auckland's Skycity Casino of any legal blame.
www.radionz.co.nz / 14 May 2007

Anti-addiction Therapies, 2006-2011- The Pharmaceutical Industrys Next Viagra?

ROMANIA - What is in the report [Tristan Heath]? Gambling addiction - A market that is more potential than current reality. It faces difficulties in both developing effective treatments and overcoming cultural perception that gambling is not something that should necessarily be treated by a pharmaceutical.
www.prlog.org / May 18, 2007

Thailand's video game junkies

THAILAND - "Addiction to online games is among the top nine reasons for poor performance in school, along with problems like truancy, gambling and sex,"
www.bangkokrecorder.com / 16 May 2007

Gambling chief at a loss over casino

UK - THE minister in charge of gambling has admitted the government has `not got a position' on how to take forward Manchester's supercasino bid. The CAP, an independent body of experts appointed by Parliament, made the shock decision to recommend Manchester as the site of Britain's first supercasino in January. "This is not just about the supercasinos but the whole question of gambling. There are people who would vote against any new gambling,
www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk / David Ottewell / 14/ 5/2007

Cameron's views on Blackpool casino

UK - TORY leader David Cameron has told The Gazette he would not support two supercasino licences being handed out. It follows a statement by Prime Minister Tony Blair in the House of Commons that if the investment was there, both casinos should be built. "The process for examining where it should go was flawed and it should be reviewed, and it should consider issues such as the appropriateness of a destination casino which Blackpool would be.
www.blackpoolonline.co.uk / Blackpool Gazette / Shelagh Parkinson / 18 May 2007

Jewel thief sent to jail

UK - A JEWEL thief who stole rings worth 40,000 from a Carlisle shop has been jailed for 20 months at the city's crown court. Cigna's solicitor Ahmed Nazim said he stole the jewellery to pay off substantial debts which had built up because of his hard drugs and gambling habits.
www.newsandstar.co.uk / 15/05/2007

Thief admits stealing old friend's cash

UK - A GOOD Samaritan who gave a home to a long-term mate down on his luck lost more than 2,000 after his pal disappeared with the cash from his safe. Smith, now 44, had been a gambling addict in debt to the tune of 300,000 at the time.
www.cambridge-news.co.uk / 18 May 2007

Fruit machine addict stole thousands from council

UK - A council administration assistant gambled - and lost - when he started playing fruit machines. Glyn Strugnell began stealing cash... And in two years disappropriated more than 16,000.
www.dailyecho.co.uk / John Hoskins / 5-19-07

Jowell under fire once more

UK - Culture Secretary... Jowell... Accused of treating existing gambling establishments with "blatant unfairness" Lost profits... US$238m a year.
www.intergame.ltd.uk / 18 May 2007

Lawyers challenge legality of casinos plan

UK - Casino operators have accused Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell of "blatant unfairness" in her treatment of existing gaming establishments. He [Beloff QC] added: "Whether she deliberately abandoned that policy or not, she has created a situation in which existing casinos are condemned to second-class status."
www.thisislondon.co.uk / 17.05.07

An outside chance at gambling?

UK - A ban on smoking is to be introduced in all public places in England, including bingo halls, from July 1. About 50 per cent of our members smoke...
www.scarboroughtoday.co.uk / Scarborough Evening News / Chris Nixon / 17 May 2007

Will the smoking ban kill bingo halls?

UK - The bingo industry generates billions of pounds in stake money, and employs 20,000 people throughout the UK. However, as the smoking ban in enclosed spaces is introduced, experts are predicting disaster, with up to one in three clubs facing possible closure. In Scotland, 10 clubs have already closed down since the ban was enforced last April - and more are set to follow. The effect of the smoking ban in Scotland's been a lot worse than we thought it was going to be...
news.bbc.co.uk / BBC Money Programme / Josie Milani / 17 May 2007