China detects US$149bn in cross-border gambling

China detects US$149bn in cross-border gambling

A proposed amendment to criminalise the promotion of gambling is open for consultation.

China.- The Ministry of Public Security has reported its achievements in the first nine months of 2020 in its crusade against cross-border gambling operations.  

From January to September the Ministry estimated that cross-border gambling funds reached 1CNY trillion (US$149.6 billion) although it did not clarify how much of that was prevented from exiting the country.  

About 8,800 cases were investigated in the period and over 60,000 suspects were arrested. The Ministry said it dismantled 1,400 cross-border gambling operations that were aided by payment platforms and underground banks.  

The ministry said its measures will be a “strong deterrent” for any international gaming companies that target Chinese players.  

As part of these initiatives, in August the Chinese authorities announced they will issue a blacklist of gambling destinations.

They also plan an amendment to China’s criminal law, to criminalise the act of soliciting Chinese nationals to gamble or promoting gambling activities.   

This is expected to include possible jail sentences of between five and ten years, matching the penalty for running casinos in China.  

The penalty for gambling would remain at three years of imprisonment. 

The amendment was reviewed by the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress last week and has become available for public consultation until November 19.  

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