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First ever CPS deferred prosecution agreement for £615 million

|News, Fraud and economic crime

The Crown Prosecution Service has entered into a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) today (Tuesday 5 December 2023) with Entain plc, a global online sports betting and gaming business (owner of Ladbrokes and Coral bookmakers) headquartered in London, to settle the HM Revenue & Customs investigation into the Company (and its group).

This agreement was approved by Dame Victoria Sharp DBE, President of the King’s Bench Division, at the Royal Courts of Justice, sitting as the Crown Court at Southwark. 

The conduct which is the subject of this DPA relates to the alleged failure by GVC to prevent bribery contrary to Section 7 of the Bribery Act 2010 between July 2011 and December 2017. The alleged bribery offences occurred primarily in Turkey. GVC disposed of its Turkish business in December 2017.

Entain plc has agreed to pay a financial penalty plus disgorgement of profits totalling £585 million, to make a charitable donation of £20 million and to pay a contribution of £10 million to the CPS and HMRC costs.

Please see here for the Deferred Prosecution Agreement and Summary of Judgment.

Andrew Penhale, Chief Crown Prosecutor said: “We are pleased to announce today the approval of the first ever CPS Deferred Prosecution Agreement.

“The Court has concluded that there have been sweeping changes to the company’s compliance procedures and that Entain is committed to the promotion of open and transparent gambling operations and improvement of their corporate governance.

“The wider gaming industry may wish to reflect on the implications of this agreement for their own corporate compliance procedures and, where appropriate, take action to address and report any failings they identify. The CPS will continue to work closely with law enforcement partners in this area, such as HMRC, as well as the industry regulator, the Gambling Commission”.

Notes to editors

  • Andrew Penhale is the Chief Crown Prosecutor for the Regional and Wales Division within the CPS Serious Economic, Organised Crime and International Directorate
  • Please read DPA guidance for more information
  • Reporting restrictions: Pursuant to section 4(2) of the Contempt of Court Act 1981, there shall be postponed until the conclusion of any criminal proceedings against the Relevant Individuals, any report of the paragraph 8 hearing save in the terms of or with reference to the terms of the written summary of the judgment and the approved market statement

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