Clause 3 - Gambling

Part of Gambling Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:45 pm on 9th November 2004.

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Photo of Richard Caborn Richard Caborn Minister of State (Sport and Tourism), Department for Culture, Media & Sport 3:45 pm, 9th November 2004

The nature of the national lottery is that money raised for good causes is clearly different from other forms of gambling. The Bill should therefore treat the national lottery separately from the rest of gambling. The national lottery has its own legislation, and any fundamental changes to it are best made through national lottery legislation. However, certain aspects of the Bill should apply to the national lottery. First, it would clearly be inconsistent for any individual who cheats at the national lottery to be treated differently from someone who cheats at gambling. Government new clause 3 makes cheating at the national lottery an offence, punishable to the same extent as someone cheating at any other form of gambling.

Additionally, the provisions relating to the enforceability of contracts should also apply to the national lottery. Those who operate or play the national lottery should have the same assurance that they will receive what they are owed as those entering into any other form of gambling contract.

It is right that the national lottery and the rest of gambling have separate regulators, but that does not mean that they should operate in a vacuum. The Government believe that the gambling commission and the National Lottery Commission should be in regular contact with each other about issues that affect them both. The Bill already attaches a duty for the gambling commission to consult the National Lottery Commission when it becomes aware of a matter in which the National Lottery Commission may have an interest. It also adds a power for the Secretary of State to enforce that.