The end of yet another week brings yet another crop of Euro 2016 betting busts across Asia.
We start in Vietnam, where the Ministry of Public Security arrested 12 people suspected of running a Ho Chi Min City-based online betting operation. The two ringleaders reportedly had links to other illegal betting rings that had been dismantled by Vietnamese authorities in recent months.
The HCMC-based betting operation handled wagers worth VND 450b (US $20m) via a number of Philippines-licensed websites, including Bong88.com and v9bet.com. Organizers opened over 200 accounts with banks and money lenders to transfer funds to and from the sites on behalf of their betting clientele.
In Singapore, the local Criminal Investigation Department arrested ten men suspected of facilitating illegal Euro 2016 wagers. The CID claimed the betting ring had handled over $2.4m in wagers in just the past two weeks. Police seized around $400k in cash, along with the standard haul of computers, phones and betting records. If convicted, the suspects are looking at up to five years in Singapore stripes.
In Thailand, Bangkok police arrested 11 men suspected of operating as agents for an unidentified internationally licensed website, for which the men received a 5% cut of the net proceeds. The ring operated out of a private house, serving around 3,200 customers around the clock, with a staff of 20 working 12-hour shifts.
We finish with the resolution of a non-Euro 2016 football betting bust in Cambodia. Back in February, 23 South Korean nationals were arrested in Phnom Penh for running an online betting ring out of two private homes. This week, the accused were each sentenced to five months in prison before being deported to their native land.
Cambodia Daily reported that the two ringleaders were given two-year sentences, but the judge suspended all but five months of the incarceration so that the men could all be deported simultaneously.
The pair protested their innocence to the end, with one claiming to have been planning “an internet home-shopping site” while the other said the plan was to “operate a tour agency.” Enjoy that tour of Cambodian prison, boys.