Dutch government cracking down on Internet gambling

Ernst Hirsch Ballin, the Dutch Justice Minister, is reportedly following through with plans to take legal action against Internet gambling sites that illegally target Dutch consumers and have so far refused to shut down their operations.

The Remote Gambling Association and European Union have had little luck applying pressure to the Dutch Government over its Internet gambling stance.

A justice ministry spokesman declined to tell news agency ANP how many sites are being targeted, but confirmed that both Dutch-based and foreign companies are involved.

Under Dutch law, firms must have a permit to offer online gambling. All gambling in the Netherlands is in the hands of the state.

Hirsch Ballin is also planning to warn banks that they are breaking the law if they have illegal gambling sites as customers, ANP says. “We are talking about the bigger banks operating in the Netherlands,” the spokesman told ANP.