PNR Tecnologia and Lema are the latest gambling companies to apply for accreditation with the Rio de Janeiro State Lottery (Loterj), which has come under fire from the Brazilian Institute for Responsible Gambling (IBJR).

On Wednesday (April 3), PNR Tecnologia submitted documents regarding the operation of sports betting and online games with Loterj accreditation. On Friday (April 5), Lema visited Loterj headquarters.

The aim was to carry out a proof of concept and assess compliance with Loterj regulations. This comes after Lema presented its platform for operating sports betting and lottery back in March.

In March, Caesars sports betting licensee BIG Brazil announced it was seeking Loterj accreditation to offer both sports betting and lottery. Loterj has since been criticized for its attempts to operate outside its state of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil.

The director of PNR Tecnologia, Yuri William, supported Loterj’s initiative. He explained: “Loterj has a lot to add to the new Brazilian regulated market as it is the first lottery to do so.”

“We believe that with Loterj’s support we can grow in the fixed odds betting market given Brazil’s potential for the world. We want to be part of this market.”

Ongoing dispute between IBJR and Loterj in Brasil

Loterj’s announcements regarding PNR Tecnologia and Lema’s attempts to seek accreditation have drawn criticism from the country’s Ministry of Finance and the Brazilian Institute for Responsible Gambling (IBJR).

Brazil’s IBJR published a note denouncing Loterj’s actions. It stressed that it had acted beyond its reasonable scope in accrediting gaming companies for nationwide activities. The IBJR has called his moves a “clear violation” of federal regulations.

“The actions carried out by Loterj create disorder, raise unnecessary doubts and harm the process of regulating the fixed odds betting industry in Brazil,” the IBJR note said.

“It is illegal to take the position that fixed odds betting operators licensed by Loterj (or any other authority other than the Ministry of Finance) have the right to explore this lottery modality and offer these services to consumers located anywhere other than the territory of the state of Rio de Janeiro.”

The IBJR also claims that the company has sent letters to gambling companies asking them to cease operations because they do not have a license issued by Loterj or risk a series of administrative sanctions procedures.

According to the IBJR, this was an “unfounded request” that lacked a legal basis. The reason for this is the decision of the Federal Court of Justice that legislative competence in accordance with Article 22 of the Federal Constitution remains exclusively the responsibility of the Union.

Santa Ritta: IBJR “is right”

André Santa Ritta, associate lawyer at Pinheiro Neto Advogados, believes that the IBJR’s criticism is well-founded.

Santa Ritta believes that Loterj does not have the power to allow its licensees to operate nationwide. He told iGB via email: “IBJR is right and their arguments make sense.

“I was involved in these discussions myself. I don’t believe Loterj has the legal basis to allow companies to operate across the country.”

iGB has reached out to Loterj for comment on IBJR’s statement but has not yet received a response.