Police challenged to investigate betting company director for forgery

BVI-registered Chadborn Holdings, which owns 10 Tipico shops in Austria as a franchise partner, had sued the Malta-based betting company for damages in the region of €14 million for breach of a franchise contract

File Photo
File Photo

The Commissioner of Police has been asked to begin criminal proceedings against betting company Tipico over an alleged forgery in 2018, in challenge proceedings by a former franchise partner.

Tipico franchise partner Antonios Stampolidis filed the challenge through his lawyer, Rachel Tua on Monday. 

The challenge, if ratified by the court, would force the police to prosecute company representatives for forgery.

Stampolidis, representing the BVI-registered Chadborn Holdings, which owns 10 Tipico shops in Austria as a franchise partner, had sued the Malta-based betting company for damages in the region of €14 million for breach of a franchise contract. In that suit, he alleged that Tipico’s former director Oliver Voigt had transferred Stampolidis’ signature from a faxed copy of a draft contract onto an amended version which Stampolidis had already rejected.

In the press, Tipico is reported to have denied the allegations as “completely not true” and said that Voigt and Kessler had not been directors for the three years leading up to the filing of the civil suit. According to Tipico, the ending of the contractual partnership between the two parties was “completely different to that reported by the sworn application and it is absolutely not true that the defendant company breached contractual dispositions in some way.”

In an email from the police to Stampolidis’ lawyer dating back to 2018, the police said they had investigated the case, but appeared reluctant to prosecute. “From investigations carried out on this case it was confirmed that no contract was ever delivered to MGA, only a confirmation from Tipico that they entered into an agreement with Chadborn Holdings Ltd. Kindly note that MGA does not regulate the terrestrial interface in betting shops which are outside of Malta for jurisdictional purposes,” reads the email.

According to the MGA’s rules at the time, all betting companies were bound to deliver a copy of every commercial agreement to the authority.

In reply to questions sent to it, the MGA said " at this stage we cannot comment in relation to any police investigations, but can confirm that whenever a possible breach comes to our attention it is investigated and, if necessary, steps taken to sanction the breach and ensure rectification."

The case continues.

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