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CC | Curaçao illegally extends gambling licenses

HomeLandenCuraçaoCC | Curaçao illegally extends gambling licenses

WILLEMSTAD – Curaçao’s Minister of Finance, Javier Silvania, once again violates the law by issuing and renewing gambling licenses through the Gaming Control Board (GCB), despite its legal inadmissibility.

According to the 1993 gambling law, still in force, the issuance and renewal of gambling licenses must be regulated through a national decree. These licenses become legally valid only after approval from the governor and the Council of Ministers, following legally required publication in the Official Gazette. By delegating this process and failing to regulate it through a national decree, the minister acts in violation of the 1993 gambling law.

Curaçao currently operates under the Offshore Hazard Games Ordinance, but a new law, the Gambling Ordinance (LOK), is in the works. The draft version of this law received strong criticism from the Social Economic Council and the Council of Advice (RvA), advising to send the law back to the drawing board. Minister of Finance Javier Silvania needs to redo his homework.

The RvA has even advised the government not to submit the draft to the Parliament, mainly because the law is not in line with Article 111 of Curaçao’s constitution. This is partly due to the establishment of the new regulator, the Curaçao Gaming Authority (CGA), which is not currently independent in its current form.

“Sublicenses”

The LOK law, which recently faced considerable criticism during a parliamentary committee meeting, and the old 1993 gambling law, which makes no distinction between master licenses and sublicenses, are both subjects of discussion.

The current five valid licenses under the old law did not follow the correct procedures for renewals in 2008, 2013, 2018, and 2023, making their legality disputable. The court has indicated in several judgments that the practice of issuing sublicenses by license holders is arguably in conflict with the spirit of the 1993 gambling law.

Moreover, the Court in Willemstad has stated that the practice where license holders issue numerous sublicenses with a global reach and significant turnover, without adequate supervision from the license holders or the government, is difficult to reconcile with any legitimate purpose of the current law.

Despite these criticisms, Minister Silvania has created the possibility for current providers to continue for up to one year under their sublicense not issued by the government but by one of the master license holders, a process that lacks legal foundation.

Silvania insists in the media that the current license renewal process by the GCB under the old legislation remains unchanged, although the old legislation does not provide for that possibility.

What worries analysts is that the entire process currently underway – until the LOK is potentially adopted – still conceals the identity of ultimate beneficiaries (UBOs) and financial flows, which is crucial for dismantling the current practice of master and sublicenses.

Blacklist

In connection with the upcoming review by the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force, the Council of Advice deems it necessary for Curaçao to comply with the recently updated international standards and recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force. It calls for strengthening measures against money laundering, terrorist financing, and proliferation.

According to analysts, Curaçao is at risk of being blacklisted by the Task Force, given the current situation where unknown ultimate beneficiaries (UBOs) still have free rein. These UBOs are not hindered by any supervision from the Curaçao government. Moreover, they seem to be gaining support from the Minister of Finance, who is aware of the illegality of extended licenses. Nonetheless, these licenses are being renewed again through a delegated structure that lacks a legal basis.

Perpetuating such a situation, where regulations regarding financial transparency and oversight are not adequately adhered to, could have serious consequences for Curaçao’s international reputation and financial integrity.

Bron: Curacao Chronicle

Naschrift KKC

  • De illegale sublicentie arresten van de Hoge Raad vindt u hier en hier
  • De illegale sublicentie adviezen van de Hoge Raad vindt u hier en hier
  • De illegale sublicentie vonnissen van het Gemeenschappelijk Hof van Justitie vindt u hier en hier
  • Illegale sublicentie vonnissen van het Gerecht in Eerste Aanleg vindt u hier, hier, hier en hier.

Lees ook: Curacao.nu | Curaçao verlengt onrechtmatig gokvergunningen

Lees ook: Dossier Koninkrijksrelaties | Hoge Raad: Illegale Curacaose goklicenties mogen illegaal worden genoemd

Lees ook: Curacao.nu | Geen van de ‘masterlicentiehouders’ op Curaçao heeft een geldige vergunning

Lees ook: Follow The Money: Cryptomiljarden en illegale goksites: ‘Russisch’ 1xBet verovert vanuit Curaçao de wereld

Lees ook: Blog Koninkrijksbelangen | First Lady over innige banden tussen politici en de georganiseerde misdaad.

Lees ook: Blog Koninkrijksbelangen | Masterlicenties over de illegaliteit van Curacaose online gok masterlicenties.

Lees ook: Blog Koninkrijksbelangen | Sublicenties over de illegaliteit van Curacaose online gok sublicenties.

Lees ook: Koninkrijksbelangenblog | Witwaswalhalla over witwassen met behulp van een niet op de wet gebaseerde en niet door de overheid gereguleerde online gambling masterlicentie – sublicentie structuur.

Lees ook: Koninkrijksbelangenblog | Waar zijn de miljarden van Curacao? over belastingontduiking met behulp van een illegale en ongereguleerde online gambling masterlicentie – sublicentie structuur.

Overzicht: het Curacao Goksector dossier

Verdieping: De Koninkrijksbelangen blogserie

 

2 reacties

  1. The “new” legislation is nothing more than a “codification”
    Now there are a limited number of licences holders providing a unlimited amount of sub licences.
    This is not legal but common practice.
    The new legislation is there to legalise this.
    Nothing more and nothing less.
    Nothing changes except the legal basis of the existing situation.
    Question is just; who benefits?
    Just the existing sector because the existing structure will be “legit”.

  2. Why does J. Silvania issue and renew licenses? What are the consequences when he doesn’t issue the licenses? What is the “gain” for the public (JS is a public servant)? What links are there with the Italian mob or other mob’s?
    Why does JS put up his middlefinger towards Parliament in regard to the LOK?

    Is it time for a change, say: Trans-Silvania? What is the position of the OM in regard to the offense against legislation? Why is this an ongoing story and why is the GOVERNOR not involved to prevent unlawful actions by a Secretary of Finance? How dirty is this pothole?

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