The largest operator of casinos in Spain, Codere, is planning to file a lawsuit against the Austrian online casino bwin as well as the Spanish Real Madrid football club for allegedly advertising the online casino illegally inside Spain. The lawsuit, to be filed at the Madrid Commercial Court, alleges that Real Madrid and bwin are in violation of Spain’s Unfair Competition Law because neither organization has a permit to operate or advertise gambling products inside Spain. Codere believes that Real Madrid football club is illegally promoting gambling inside Spain.
Codere is a large multinational conglomerate which operates 54000 slot machines, 275 betting parlors, 139 bingo rooms, 3 racetracks and 7 casinos in Spain, Italy, Brazil, Argentina, Columbia, Mexico, Uruguay and Panama. Codere stated in a news release that – “neither Real Madrid nor bwin were allowed in the past nor at the present by the licensing authorities of Spain to operate or promote online casinos inside the country and neither organization is sheltered under Cross-Border Laws of the European Union.”
According to Spanish gambling laws, only licensed casinos, gambling parlors and Spanish poker rooms are allowed to legally advertise within the country. According to Codere – “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.”
Representatives of bwin confirmed that the online casino is one of the many European internet gambling operators who are sponsoring football in Spain and that it has a license to offer online sportsbooks in Spain. There are today over 40 casinos across Spain, along with more than a quarter of a million gambling machines.