Dutch Lawyers Unite Against Controversial Maltese Gambling Law: A Plea for Government Intervention

Maltese bill 55

In a bold and unprecedented move, a group of Dutch attorneys has come together to address an urgent matter that threatens the European legal landscape. They have penned an open letter to Minister of Legal Protection Franc Weerwind, urging the Dutch government to take a firm stand against the contentious Maltese legislation, Bill 55. This collective action reflects a growing concern about the potential ramifications of this law and its potential to disrupt established legal norms.

Five prominent Dutch attorneys have collaborated to voice their opposition to Bill 55, a law that was enacted in Malta in June. This legislation aims to shield gaming operators holding licenses from the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) from legal liabilities arising from their authorized activities. However, these attorneys are convinced that the implications of this law are far-reaching and could have a detrimental impact on European law as a whole.

The crux of the attorneys’ argument lies in their assertion that the Maltese Bill 55 poses a grave threat to European law. In their open letter, they emphasize that this law could undermine the very foundation of legal principles that the European legal environment is built upon. They express a deep concern that the law could potentially create a precedent that weakens the robust legal framework that has been painstakingly developed over the years.

The attorneys draw parallels between their efforts and the legal proceedings that have taken place in Austria and Germany. In these cases, higher courts have ruled that gambling companies can be held accountable for a consumer’s historical losses. The attorneys believe that this legal precedent could play a pivotal role in shaping future legal decisions within the Netherlands, impacting the stance on gaming corporations operating in the grey market.

Central to the attorneys’ plea is the accountability of MGA-licensed operators who conducted gambling activities without obtaining a license from the Dutch regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA). The attorneys assert that these companies should be held responsible for compensating players for any losses incurred. They contend that these companies were operating outside the boundaries of legality and should be obligated to compensate players accordingly.

Another key aspect of the attorneys’ argument is the breach of the Recast Brussels Regulation, an EU law that governs legal judgments between member states. They highlight how Bill 55 has the potential to disrupt the equilibrium of the independent judiciaries and legislatures of both the Netherlands and Malta. This breach, they argue, could lead to a significant erosion of the Rule of Law within the European Union.

The open letter concludes with a fervent call to action, urging the Dutch government to take a principled stand in defence of Dutch citizens affected by Bill 55. The attorneys implore the government to ensure that Malta refrains from undermining the Rule of Law that is enshrined in the EU treaties. They emphasize that preserving the integrity of the legal systems within the EU is crucial for maintaining a just and equitable society.

The collaborative effort of these Dutch attorneys serves as a powerful reminder of the importance of safeguarding the legal foundations upon which the European Union is built. As the controversy surrounding Bill 55 continues to unfold, it remains to be seen how this collective plea for government intervention will shape the future of gambling regulation and legal standards within the EU.

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