Dozens involved in online gambling website arrested in Taichung

A Taichung-based group of 44 individuals suspected of running an international gambling website were arrested on Nov. 29 and have been turned over to the Taichung District Prosecutors Office for further investigation, according to police.

The group consisted of six Japanese nationals, who allegedly masterminded the operation, one Chinese national, and 37 Taiwanese, and had handled more than 800 billion yen (US$5.84 billion) in bets over the past year, police with the Sixth Precinct of Taichung’s police department said.

The police said the group was operating in a commercial building in Taichung’s seventh redevelopment zone. Targeting Japanese gamblers, the group’s website allowed people to play baccarat and bet on the FIFA World Cup as well as other sports events.

The investigation was triggered partly by the FIFA World Cup, which opened on Nov. 20 and has spurred huge interest in betting, said police, who indicated they took action soon after receiving tip-offs from their sources.

Those arrested were handed over to Taichung prosecutors for questioning and then released without bail because they were not considered flight risks or capable of destroying or colluding on evidence, prosecutors said.

They have been barred from leaving the country, however, according to prosecutors, who continue to investigate the case and determine whether or not to indict the suspects.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel