Four of Europe’s leading gambling operators have launched a combined lawsuit against the Principality of Andorra over a recent casino licence award.
The group taking the legal action is made up of Casinos Austria, Genting Group, Partouche France and Grupo CIRSA, all of whom have alleged that there were irregularities in the process that led to the awarding of Andorra’s sole national casino licence to local company Jocs SA.
Back in October, the four gambling companies demanded that the Andorra executive and its Gaming Control Board (CRAJ) annul the decision to give the licence to Jocs, who made a bid of €10 million, over what they described at the time as ‘grave tender process indiscretions’. The quartet alleged that the process included a number of requisites that it was impossible for Jocs to fulfil. At the end of 2018, the CRAJ agreed to review the casino tender process, though that review will take up to a month to complete as they re-evaluate the relevant technicalities.
But now the gambling operators are upping the ante with a lawsuit – likely to be lodged in the next few days – that demands the annulling of the original decision, and the expelling of Jocs SA as a licenced operator. The lawsuit states that CRAJ cannot conduct a proper review of its tender while Jocs is still the incumbent, because the company had interfered with the original bid process.
The lawsuit goes on to suggest that Andorra’s executive is at risk of both economic and reputational damages that would be significant.
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