On Tuesday, the Alderney Gaming Control Commission (AGCC) published an independent external review of its processes leading up to the suspension and eventual revocation of licenses owned by Full Tilt Poker.
The independent review, commissioned by the ACGG last December, was focused on the "appropriateness, timeliness and fairness of the actions undertaken" by the AGCC. It was conducted by Peter Dean, former chairman of the British Gambling Commission.
In a 12-page report, Dean found that the AGCC’s efforts regarding the actions surrounding Full Tilt Poker were "appropriate, timely and fair," but he added that the commission has "lessons to learn" from the incident.
“Deplorable as the episode covered in this review has been, it is nevertheless an example of regulation working as it should," Dean said in his report. "As soon as plausible evidence of irregularities came to light the regulator acted promptly and proportionately. An investigation was instituted, findings made, a hearing held, judgment delivered and sanctions imposed. Due process was followed.
“This assessment will be of little comfort to the disaffected players who are still denied access to funds owed to them by FTP. The tribunal proceedings in 2011 were adjourned for several weeks to allow time for a rescue package to be negotiated."
Dean suggested that, in the future, the AGCC should establish a "proper direct relationship" with its licensees and not resort to intermediaries such as attorneys for information about the company.
"Throughout its dealings with FTP, AGCC relied to a significant extent on FTP’s external lawyers as a channel of communication. They played a prominent role in the arrangements for satisfying AGCC about the credentials of the owners of associated companies; in the bolstering of FTP’s compliance function; and in acting as go-between when, for example, FTP was dilatory in supplying information and AGCC wished to chase it up."
In a separate press release, André Wilsenach, executive director of the AGCC, thanked Dean for his work and welcomed his recommendations.
“The AGCC would like to thank Peter Dean for his detailed and thorough report," Wilsenach said. "We believed it was important, given the sensitivities surrounding the revocation of Full Tilt Poker’s licenses that an independent review should be carried out into the way in which the AGCC conducted itself throughout this process and we are grateful that this has now been completed.
“We wanted to reassure ourselves and those who take an interest in our activities that should mistakes have been made then we would recognize them and if lessons could be learned that we would learn them."
Read the full report at gamblingcontrol.org.