Fifa gamer and YouTuber Nepenthez, also known as, Craig Douglas and his business partner Dylan Rigby, have been fined £91,000 and £164,000, respectively, for running a betting website for Fifa 17 Ultimate Team known as FutGalaxy.
Both of them pleaded guilty to the offences of running an illegal betting website and advertising it too, under UK’s Gambling Act. While Douglas, pleaded guilty to two charges, Rigby pleaded guilty for three, two of which were related to running the betting business.
At the time of writing this post, Nepenthez has 1,452,325 YouTube subscribers with each of his videos garnering at least 100,000 views.
The betting website worked on the in-game currency used in Fifa 17 video game. Users could transfer their in-game FUT currency to the website, use it to bet on real-life football games and then transfer the virtual currency back — to be used in the game.
In a video posted on his YouTube channel, Douglas said, “I’ve got something coming up on Monday, sixth of February that could change my life, define my future. If you don’t know, just Google Nepenthez court case and it will come up for you.”
The court argued that such betting websites can have serious implications on the growth of kids who are usually into playing such games and follow popular YouTubers like Craig Douglas in order to gain a better understanding of the game as well as learn few tricks to enhance their gameplay.
This is the first time that the UK Gambling Act has been used to crack down on a website that has been running illegal betting based on a video game.
According to a Bloomberg report, more such video game betting sites are running online and make up for a multi-billion pound industry.