Executives at Wynn Macau Ltd have expressed alarm after hearing that their name was used as part of a scam that netted the culprits nearly $8 million. This according to a report by Chinese state media.
According to the Chinese media outlet, the scammers marketed a new online casino venture looking to find potential “investors” to be a part of the project. To help garner investments, the culprits stated that Wynn Macau was part of the project. This helped to draw 200 victims into the scam, as they received more than $7.9 million.
In a statement by a spokesman for Wynn Macau, they stated, “We are highly concerned by this recently reported incident and we have been liaising with the Macau Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau accordingly.”
They added that “Wynn Macau does not engage in any online investment or gaming sites. We encourage the public to be extremely wary of any sites claiming to have a connection with Wynn.”
The statement is a reference to the fact that online gambling is extremely limited within Macau, and within the region in general. None of the casinos offer operations online, however, there is horse racing and sports wagering that can be found on a few sites within the region.
For now, there are not many details available on the scam. The 200 victims are reportedly from 10 of the mainland provinces, which include Guangdong, right near Macau. The investors were lured into the scheme through an app that promised “fast” and “high” returns for those who were willing to invest.
This is not the only such incident in recent years. It is becoming a common occurrence where scammers from both inside and outside of China to offer people the opportunity to invest in an online casino style operation. Most are not aware that these operations would be illegal in China, giving the scammers the opportunity to make a “first of its kind” offer to investors.
To look more authentic, it has become common practice to use the name of an established casino operation to support the legitimacy of the scam. This has been highly successful to this point.
To this point, no arrests have been made. Authorities have not even said if they believe that the culprits were operating inside the borders of mainland China. The app has reportedly been closed down, however.