April 2, 2009 (CAP Newswire) — Authorities in Hangzhou, a city in the eastern part of China, have arrested 11 men on charges of online gambling. Most forms of gambling are illegal in China, save for a few state-run lottery programs and some limited horse racing betting.
According to international news source Earth Times, the illegal gambling network was linked via the Internet to a casino based in the Philippines. A local businessman had reportedly set up the gambling network a year ago during a gambling trip to Macao, acting as agent for the operations in China.
The man then recruited other agents, and the gambling network ultimately took stakes amounting to more than 500 million in Chinese currency.
"About 80 per cent of the gamblers are local businessmen and the chances are that the money they bet came from their companies' accounts," the Earth Times quoted local police spokesman Wu Jun.
This comes shortly after a court in Shanghai issued prison sentences to 20 people for running an online sports gambling operation worth almost 1 billion dollars.