February 25, 2011

Codere launches legal action against bwin & Real Madrid

Codere is a leading Spanish multinational company in the private gaming sector in Europe and Latin America. The firm managed over 54,000 slot machines, 139 bingo halls, 275 betting locations, 3 racetracks and 7 casinos in Spain, Italy, Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Panama and Uruguay in 2010.

Codere is scheduled to file legal proceedings at the Madrid Commercial Court against online gaming operator bwin and La Liga football club Real Madrid. The suit alleges bwin and Real Madrid were advertising illegally in the Spanish jurisdiction. Codere has brought up the issue because it contends that bwin and the Real Madrid football team engaged in an aggressive and illegal advertising for games of chance stating,“has not been previously authorized by the responsible Authority or made subject to any statutory condition, neither is it protected by European Union cross-border laws”.

Spain’s Unfair Competition Law has been allegedly broken by the actions of bwin and the La Liga Football club Real Madrid and they do not have a permit to operate in Spain, according lawyers for the Codere Group. The prepared statement read, “Authorized gambling operators in Spain are not permitted to advertise or may only do so subject to stringent restrictions and after obtaining authorization from the Authority,” continuing, “Neither are authorized operators able to operate games through the Internet, although they have the necessary technology and expertise to do so, since these games are prohibited in Spain and in some cases may be activities liable for prosecution in the context of criminal law.”

The complaint demands the immediate cessation of advertising campaigns and the termination of the sponsorship agreement between Real Madrid and bwin. bwin is one of a number of European online gaming operators who sponsor Spanish football and does have a licence to provide retail sports betting in Madrid under its w1nners brand.

Codere will also, it said, launch other legal suits to resolve what it calls unfair business practices in Spain.

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