Is it the end for one-armed bandits in Poland?

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In the next week all gambling licenses for street gambling machines issued in 2009 will expire. Those are licenses for slot machines. This will end playing in shops and pubs.

Since the beginning of this year customs officials confiscated 1381 “low payouts” slot machines. “One-arm bandits” were taken to customs service warehouses. They were taken from liquor stores, pubs, petrol stations and other places where (according the law) slot machines had been set illegally.

Customs officers don’t know how many slot machines is actually on Polish gaming market. But they guarantee that if any slot machines should appear in new places, everyone can be sure they are illegal.

-,New permits for slot machines are not issued in whole country since 2009, says Mariusz Ziarnowski from Customs Chamber in Torun.
The terms and new regulations was introduced and passed by the Polish Parliament by “new gambling bill” on 19 November 2009. It radically reduced the possibility of placing “one-armed bandits”. Since then new permits aren’t set for the machines in cafes, discos, pubs and petrol stations.

New licenses were given only for slot machines in casinos.

– The reality is completely different. Slot machines were massively imported from Germany and Netherlands, says one of the customs officers. They were placed in small residential shops. Slot machine owner offered the shopkeeper, for example, fixed rate for renting a scrap of shop space, where the unit was set.

“Machine’s owner pay me 400 zl per month for the scrap of space in my shop” – explains one of the shopkeepers. – I’m sure he earns several times more. Anyway, is it better to have it or not?. Take the cash for the fact that the slot machine is in my shop?
The officers from Customs Chamber in Torun indicate, that there are still several hundred “low payout slot machines” in the region.

– Formally, only the machines which were registered before six years ago can operate – says Mariusz Ziarnowski. Last permit expires on December 18.


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