Chinese police arrest 36 in online gambling sting

By Owain Flanders

Police in east China’s Zhejiang Province have arrested 36 suspects for allegedly helping gamblers bet ¥542m ($75.8m).

Police received a tip-off an online gambling platform was being promoted through the social network app WeChat, resulting in the arrest of local resident surnamed Zhou.

Zhou was later found to be an agent of the platform set up by a gang.

The platform had reportedly accumulated around 810,000 members and hired 150,000 since its inception in September 2018.

The arrests come amid vast criticism of internet and phone gambling from the Chinese state media over the past month.

In July, Public Security Minister Zhao Kezhi pledged to put an end to cross-border online gambling in accordance with the law, resulting in several closures of online gambling rings.

More recently, the Chinese Government has asked the Philippines to ban all online gambling activity in a bid to reduce the amount of illegal offshore gambling by Chinese citizens.

Despite this pressure, Philippine Ambassador to China Jose Santiago Sta. Romana said: “They can’t dictate on us. That’s our sovereign decision. That is where we stand.”

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