Popular racing group Boys Get Paid has had a $35,000 sweepstake removed from Facebook after a complaint from a member of the public.
The Department of Internal Affairs said the sweepstake was "illegal", and had contacted Facebook to have the group removed.
The group is a collection of young punting enthusiasts with 18,000 members on Facebook. They share horse racing tips, who they think will win and lose, and join in events run by the organisers.
"As with everything we do with Boys Get Paid we always look to comply with any and all gambling laws and regulations," a spokesman for the group told the Herald.
"We are yet to hear from any official authorities so cannot comment further on this specific scenario. Given that we have a strong working relationship with the New Zealand Racing Board and the authorities that surround and govern racing, we will work closely with them where needed."
One person contacted the Herald saying he had complained to the Department of Internal Affairs about the sweepstake.
"The sweepstake was for a pool of $35,000 and not licenced," he said.
"Besides diverting [money] that possibly would have been spent at the TAB there was no scrutiny or accountability to ensure that the sweepstake was run cleanly."
The man, who wanted to only be referred to as Steven, said he was not a "nasty person", but wanted to see things done the proper way.
He is a member of the Facebook group, and had noticed a sweepstake for the upcoming races in Hawke's Bay that he believed was not being run according to the law.
"I just don't think that they should be doing it," he said.
"I went on the Internal Affairs site and had a look, and anything over $5000 you're meant to have a licence for it.
"I'm a person who, I suppose you'd say, generally follows the rules. I'm not trying to be a nasty person."
It was not his intention to have the page shut down, he just wanted Boys Get Paid to apply for the proper licences.
An Internal Affairs spokesman said they were made aware of the "illegal sweepstake" on September 23.
"The department notified Facebook and requested that the post be removed as it breached the Gambling Act 2003.The post has been removed.
"We will communicate with organisers about their post, why it was illegal, how it breaches the Act, the licensing process needed to run these events, information on the prohibition of online-gambling in NZ, and explain that if any money was paid it needs to be refunded."
They have only received one other complaint about the group, in 2018, relating to advertising overseas gambling.
"We contacted the organisers and they removed everything to comply."