China, Vietnam police smash gambling ring
Police from China and Vietnam have cracked a large cross-border online gambling gang and captured 106 Chinese suspects, according to the Ministry of Public Security on Tuesday.
Among the 106 suspects, 29 were arrested across the country. The other 77, who were arrested in Vietnam, have been escorted back from Vietnam to face charges, according to the ministry.
Meanwhile, police smashed 15 gambling dens and confiscated more than 2,000 bank cards, it said.
In January, Vietnamese police discovered that the Chinese suspects had opened casinos in Vietnam to solicit Chinese gamblers. The intelligence was shared with the ministry, which set up a joint investigation team that found many gambling dens in Hunan province and Vietnam.
"The criminal gambling ring had a strict organizational structure, and gang members assumed different tasks to form a complete chain," said Zhuang Hao, an official at the ministry's Public Security Management Bureau.
In early June, police in Vietnam and China conducted a unified sting to act against the criminal gang.
According to Huang Yiqun, a police officer with the Liuyang city public security department in Hunan, the suspects were divided into four groups: Three used the gambling platform to set up gambling clubs and unions to solicit the gamblers, while the other provided financial support for the gangs.
According to the ministry, the amount of money involved for each gambling group was more than 100 million yuan ($14.5 million).
"The joint action to smash the cross-border major gambling ring is a successful law enforcement operation case between China and Vietnam, which will set an example for later cooperation with other neighboring countries," said Zhang Xiaopeng, deputy director at the ministry's Public Security Management Bureau.
He said they will severely combat major international gambling groups and will strengthen intelligence sharing and joint action cooperation with other countries to hunt down criminal gangs that escape abroad.
Moreover, police will work closely with other administrative sectors to beef up preventive measures to greatly curb online gambling crimes, he added.