KRAIL Arrest Leads To Dispute Over Ukraine Gambling Law
Author: Joe Kizlauskas
Last Updated: 10th March 2023
Ukraine’s regulated gaming sector has been tarnished as a result of the arrest of a member of the newly constituted regulating agency, The Commission for the Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries.
NABU, Ukraine’s federal anti-corruption department, announced the arrest of an unarmed KRAIL member last Monday, accusing him of “receiving an illegal benefit in the amount of $90,000.”
“The official demanded funds for assistance in granting licences in the gambling business,” according to the Commission’s warrant.
Furthermore, NABU reported that throughout the summer of this year, it conducted “covert investigations” and discovered “the existence of a system of obtaining illegal rewards in especially large amounts for the issuance of permits and licences for the right to engage in gambling.”
The agency also noted that it had documented proof that a member of KRAIL had been given unlawful advantages in order to sway decisions about the issuance of gaming establishment licences in Chernihiv and Zaporizhzhia.
The member of KRAIL “was acting chairman of the Commission” at the time of the offences, according to the warrant, prompting Ukrainian media to point to Evgeny Getman as the most likely perpetrator, having “carried the status during the summer.”
KRAIL warns against premature conclusions
In response, KRAIL warned “citizens against premature conclusions, since the presumption of innocence, enshrined in the provisions of Part Two of Article Two of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, protects a person from criminal punishment until his guilt is legally proven and established by a court conviction.”
The KRAIL regulating body, established in November of last year and directed by former Ukraine special forces commander Ivan Rudyi as an autonomous organisation, is now regarded as a crucial market necessary for the implementation of the ‘Ukraine Gambling Law.’ Only three operators – Cosmolot, Parimatch, and Vbet – have received Gambling Law online licences to date, while the KRAIL regulatory approach has been criticised by rejected incumbents for providing no oversight as to why licences were denied or accepted, despite the Gambling Law still requiring key technical framework provisions.