Vietnam police bust online gambling ring, arrest 7

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Vuong Chan Thanh and his wife Dam Kim Khuyen listen to their arrest warrant being read out by a police officer. They were arrested October 18 for allegedly running the Vietnam operations of a Philippine gambling website. / PHOTO: HOAI NAM

Ministry of Public Security police Friday arrested seven people in Ho Chi Minh City for their alleged involvement with a foreign online gambling ring that did around VND500 billion (US$23.6 million) worth business in Vietnam.

Four of the suspects were arrested for "organizing gambling" and the other three for "gambling," which is illegal in Vietnam.

The ministry's hi-tech crime prevention department (C50) said they were connected with the website www.188bet.com which has its server in the Philippines.

The gambling site operates out of the Isle of Man.

Its Vietnamese operations started in 2010 with Vuong Chan Thanh, 37, and his wife, Dam Kim Khuyen, 35, being the kingpins.

They would collect the stakes from gamblers through "agents" and send them to the website operators abroad via bank transfer, the police said.

Nguyen Thanh Trieu, 35, and his wife Vuong Thuy Hang, 36, were among the agents and also among those taken in.

Tuoi Tre newspaper quoted Col Ho Sy Tien, chief of the ministry's social crimes investigation department, said the gang's transactions were done through Internet banking mainly with the Asia Commercial Bank, Vietcombank, and Dong A Bank.

Investigations are continuing.

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