Betfair and Ladbrokes seem to be losing a 7 year old fight in their efforts to challenge a Dutch ruling preventing them from offering their online gambling services to people in the Netherlands.
Yves Bot, an advocate-general at the European Court of Justice said that the Netherlands can take any measures necessary in order to protect consumers against gambling addiction. For that purpose, a country can offer a betting license to a single operator, in this case being the betting operator De Lotto.
He continued by saying that member states do not have to recognize gambling licenses which operators have obtained in other European Union countries.
Opinions made by advocate-generals at the European Court of Justice are not binding, but they are followed in the majority of the cases.
A spokesperson for London based Betfair declined to comment and a Ladbrokes representative said they would be issuing a statement later on. Officials at the Dutch Ministry of Justice had no comment.
The European Court usually rules within six months after an opinion by an advocate general.