NEWS

Greek luck may be out over slot machine law

Greece could face yet another hefty fine from the European Court of Justice, this time for its law banning slot machines, it emerged yesterday. The chief prosecutor of the Strasbourg-based court reportedly proposed that Greece be handed a 2-million-euro fine and an additional 32,000-euro daily penalty for legislation that forbids the operation of all kinds of slot machines. The law against electronic gambling, drafted in 2002 when the previous PASOK government was in power, was originally aimed at the thousands of fruit machines that had sprung up in arcades across the country but was extended to cover all games in public areas, electronic or not, apart from those in licensed casinos. The law, which violates certain basic principles of EU legislation, including the free movement of goods and services, led to Greece being convicted by the European Court in October 2006.