Police bust a multi-billion won gambling ring centred on Macau
A sharp gambling operator identified only by the common Korean name 'Kim' and allegedly working out of the Venetian resort in the offshore gambling mecca of Macau held all the cards, a report in the Korea Herald reveals; in addition to accruing profits from the activities of his Korean gamblers, he made 1.25 percent on cashing in betting chips.
Kim's activities came to light following police intelligence-based raids in Korea which found that scores of Koreans were involved in illegal gambling in Macau, wagering some 190 billion won ($155 million).
The newspaper reports that the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency arrested a casino business operator this week on charges of running an unlicensed gambling operation. Its 15 employees and five investors were charged but not detained.
Police also booked 41 customers who were found to have wagered up to 13 billion won. Among them is an unidentified renowned TV personality, officials said.
160 other punters had deposited gambling money amounting to some 177 billion won in a falsely named bank account whose real owner was Kim's Macau casino firm, police claimed. The Korea Herald reports that Kim spent 4.6 billion won to acquire the right to operate the gambling operation in the Venetian Macau, a luxury hotel and casino resort.
Kim attracted Korean customers to his business in Macau and levied a 1.25 percent surcharge for exchanging betting chips, pocketing a total of 10.4 billion won. The firm also 'helped' its customers to exchange Korean won for foreign currencies used in gambling through illicit money changers in Macau, the police alleged.
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