Lock Poker receives good news from LGA licensing

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Sep 17, 2011 Posted in Poker Industry News, Poker Room News | No Comments »

About a month ago the Merge Gaming network received the good news that it had qualified for a coveted Lotteries and Gaming Authority of Malta license (considered far superior to their current Kahnawake license due to Malta’s stricter regulations including the segregation of player funds). However, soon thereafter one of the Merge Gaming skins, Lock Poker, drew criticism when the LGA issued a statement after Lock Poker displayed the LGA on their website stating that Lock Poker had “no connection whatsoever with the Authority”.

Well as it turns out this can now be chalked up to a case of miscommunication, as the LGA rescinded its previous comment on Friday, and absolved Lock Poker of any wrongdoing in displaying the LGA logo. Apparently, Lock Poker’s only crime was to notify the LGA of an “intermediary arrangement in a timely fashion”. So, basically there was a paperwork snafu and Lock Poker failed to notify the LGA that they would like permission to display the LGA logo while their approved Malta license was being processed.

Here is the complete statement issued by the LGA on Friday [bold mine]:

“Lockpoker.eu is a website which has now been notified to the Authority as an intermediary of Alfard Malta Ltd (holder of a Maltese Remote Gaming Licence LGA/CL3/694/2010) which is to be operated on the Merge Gaming Malta platform (holder of Licence LGA/CL4/693/2010). Although duly licensed in Malta Alfard Gaming Ltd does not yet have the authorization to go live from Malta as currently Merge Malta Limited is in the process of finalising its technical setup in accordance with the Maltese Regulations, a process to be concluded shortly.”

“The Authority, however, denies spins by certain sections of the media. This was a case of having failed to notify the Authority of an intermediary arrangement in a timely fashion. The Authority, ever vigilant in the public interest, took immediate action as it does in all similar cases, irrespective of the nature of the infringement.”

With the bolded statement being part of the official statement it would appear that the LGA was very dismayed by certain media outlets taking the story (which was nothing more than a minor oversight) and running with it. The speculation was only added to after the entire Merge Gaming Network was implicated to be on the US DOJ hit-list by the website Subject: Poker. It would seem that if the S:P article has any veracity it is that payment processors are the target, not the Merge Gaming Network.

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