DraftKings Hit with Fine in Iowa over Self-Exclusion Violations


Sports betting operator DraftKings and two land-based casinos were fined by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission for various violations, Radio Iowa reported Monday.

DraftKings, which entered Iowa’s sports betting market in the fall of 2019, was fined $5,000 for a late upload of new self-exclusion list information.

An audit conducted by the Iowa gambling regulator determined that the gambling operator did not upload a list containing information about new self-banned gamblers within the required seven-day period.

No person that was included in the list signed up or gambled with DraftKings and the Racing and Gaming Commission said that it took that into consideration when it decided on the company’s penalty. This was the first violation for the gambling operator since it first entered Iowa.

The sports betting first ventured into the Iowa wagering market in the fall of 2019 with the opening of three Wild Rose Sportsbooks powered by DraftKings. The company teamed up with Wild Rose Entertainment in August 2019.

Brian Ohorilko, administrator of the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission, said that DraftKings agreed to a “stipulated agreement in the amount of five to 20-thousand dollars” and that the regulator reviewed all the facts around the operator’s violation and decided to slap it with a $5,000 fine.

DraftKings expanded its presence in Iowa this past February with the launch of a betting app.

Two Land-Based Casinos Hit with Fines

News also emerged that the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission has fined Rhythm City Casino in Davenport and Diamond Jo Casino in Worth County for violations involving surveillance cameras at the two properties.

The Iowa gambling regulator said that Rhythm City Casino started experiencing surveillance system issues in November 2018 and completely lost coverage in early January 2019. The loss of coverage included some critical areas of the casino.

The commission said that there was one more instance of intermittent loss of coverage in critical areas for around four and a half hours back in February. The regulator noted that it was not informed about that more recent incident.

The Racing and Gaming Commission determined that updates that the casino’s vendor was supposed to make did not happen and that contributed to its loss of coverage. The gambling venue was hit with a $7,500 fine.

Diamond Jo Casino was also fined $7,500 over similar violations. The casino experienced a series of camera outages in November 2019. These occurred as a result of some updates that were performed on its surveillance system. The casino said it was not aware of the outages and did not report them to the Racing and Gaming Commission.

The regulator found that in a manner similar to Rhythm City Casino, Diamond Jo Casino’s issues occurred due to a series of updates that were never completed. And very much like its fellow gambling venue, Diamond Jo lost coverage in areas where it was required to have dedicated surveillance coverage.

The casino will have to pay about $750,000 to upgrade properly its surveillance system, the Racing and Gaming Commission further noted.

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