DICJ found no suggestion of illicit activities at Suncity Group

The DICJ says it had limited resources to investigate junkets.
The DICJ says it had limited resources to investigate junkets.

A representative from the regulator has given evidence to the trial of Alvin Chau Cheok Wa.

Macau.- In the ongoing Suncity trial, Macau’s Court of First Instance in Macau has heard from the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ). The regulator told the court it found no evidence of illicit activities at Suncity Group, the former junket operator of which Alvin Chau Cheok Wa was CEO.

Wong Long Peng, head of the DICJ compliance and audit division stressed that checks were mainly based on data provided by Suncity and the city’s gaming concessionaires and subconcessionaires. When prosecutor Lai U Hou suggested that Suncity would withhold information about under-the-table betting, telephone betting and online betting from DICJ inspections, Wong said she did not know if that was the case.

According to Macau Business, Wong answered: “There were no third parties for us to verify all the information [Suncity] provided. We could only review the information it allowed us to see.”

Wong clarified that the regulator had only four or five people to carry out audits of between 100 and 200 junkets operators and did not have the resources to carry out more comprehensive work. She said that Suncity’s financial controls only pertained to its VIP gaming business in Macau but did not cover its overseas business, which was outside the scope of DICJ’s supervision.

Chau Cheok Wa and others have been indicted for operating illegal gambling, founding and leading a criminal group and for money laundering. Cheok Wa was arrested in November 2021 together with 11 others. It’s alleged that he provided illicit gaming in approved casinos and ran illicit online betting and proxy betting.

The current trial involves allegations of overseas telephone betting and online betting. Macau is investigating another case related to phone betting. In 2016, Macau enacted a ban on phone betting or proxy betting, and two years later it formally banned such activities.

The trial will continue today (November 1) with three other DICJ officials expected to testify. 

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