The boss of international online betting company Unibet who was arrested at Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport earlier this week was released on bail by an Amsterdam court on Wednesday.
Petter Nylander, believed to be a Swede, has had his passport confiscated and is not allowed to leave the Netherlands pending a French request for his extradition.
France issued a European arrest warrant for Nylander after he failed to respond to a court summons following a complaint by the country’s government-owned lottery that Unibet is breaking French laws protecting state gambling monopolies.
According to Thompson news service, the European Commission, which has launched a legal challenge to the French betting monopoly, has criticised Nylander’s arrest.
‘We believe that the French sports betting legislation is not in line with (European) community law,’ an EC spokesman is reported to have told reporters.
Unibet is also under fire in the Netherlands which also regards the company’s online betting business as illegal because of a state monopoly on gambling.
The European Commission is currently investigating the Dutch gambling monopoly and has already threatened to sue France, Sweden and Greece for banning foreign companies from the gambling market.
According to Thompson, Unibet is registered in Malta, operates from Britain and is listed on the Stockholm stock exchange. It claims to have 1.8 million customers in 150 countries.
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