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NEWS 14 March 2012

Camelot take legal action over The Health Lottery

National Lottery operators Camelot are to issue judicial review proceedings against the Gambling Commission for what they call the regulatory body’s “continuing failure to take appropriate regulatory action against The Health Lottery”.

Formal papers will be lodged in the High Court next week, with Camelot believing that The Health Lottery is “unlawful and a blatant example of an attempt to commercialise a society lottery on an industrial scale in a way that cuts across both the spirit and letter of statute and regulation”.

The view is based on information which Camelot say entered the public domain immediately after The Health Lottery’s launch, while the operators also cite an Advice Note published by the Commission in August 2011 regarding the promotion of multiple society lotteries under one brand.

Camelot say they have been in ongoing correspondence with the Gambling Commission regarding the lawfulness of the Health Lottery, with concerns first raised in October 2011. A recent communication by the Commission stating that they did not consider The Health Lottery to be unlawful has led Camelot to issue the proceedings, believing that the Commission’s reasoning is “flawed”.

Camelot chief executive Dianne Thompson said: “We’re tasked with running a UK-wide lottery for the benefit of National Lottery Good Causes throughout the UK, while society lotteries are only supposed to operate on a local, rather than national, basis. However, we believe that The Health Lottery is in clear breach of this crucial market separation envisaged by Parliament.”
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