Casinos in the Netherlands Cut Back on Poker Offerings, Illegal Circuit Thrives

2 months ago
Casinos in the Netherlands Cut Back on Poker Offerings, Illegal Circuit Thrives
31 Jan

Casinos in the Netherlands are offering less paid poker games, and as a result, the illegal poker circuit is booming. Through platforms like Facebook, paid tournaments and cash games are being offered daily in cafes or private homes. "Illegality has grown, and that is a concern for us," says

Players also cite the decrease in legal offerings from Dutch casinos as a factor in the growth of illegal poker. However, illegal poker carries risks such as unpaid winnings, cheating, and criminality. The Dutch authorities and warn of the risks of illegal poker for players on its website, including fraud and uncertain payouts, and emphasizes that participation is punishable by law.

Bad experiences with illegal poker offerings

The Dutch news website NOS and spoke with several poker players who have had bad experiences with tournaments and cash games in private homes and cafes. One person was shown a holster with a gun by another player in an attempt to intimidate him. Others have experienced armed robberies during cash games in private homes.

According to these poker players, these are "excesses" and most "home games" take place in a good atmosphere. However, they believe there is a proliferation in the black market. "And the police sometimes intervene, but not often."

Over 400.000 Dutch people player poker

According to available research published on Dutch online casino website, about 3% of the Dutch population plays poker, either at home, online, in a casino or elsewhere. This would be between 400,000 and 450,000 Dutch people aged 16 and older. Not everyone plays for money, as is the case in casinos and during "home games."

Playing live poker for money is prohibited in the Netherlands, only state-owned casinos are allowed to offer it. However, it is allowed to play within a closed group and not for business purposes. This means that the organizer cannot make it a source of income. Playing at home occasionally with friends with small amounts of money is accepted.

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Writer and semi-retired poker pro from Edinburgh (UK).Read more


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