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Malaysian Russian Online Casinos in Trouble

By: Rick Balding, Wednesday March 30th 2011
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Malaysia is one country that does not allow online gambling. Yet online casinos run by unlicensed and unregulated operators function from make shift establishments can be found there. Customers actually come to these places to wager on the online casino games offered. These are known as 'mini casinos' and are on the radar of the police. Five online mini casinos were raided and shut down by the police in the suburbs of Kuala Lumpur following complaints from neighboring businesses. These business owners had said that the online casinos operated round the clock and disturbed the peace and quiet of the area.

Senior police official Azman Isa informed reporters about the raid on the online casinos. The police had the online casino operations under observation for about a week before raids, which involved both undercover operations and overt police action. The police had to be careful because if the operators had detected their presence, then they would have switched to another server to hide their online casino sites in a matter of seconds. Five people, aged 20 to 35, were arrested and a total of 65 computers were seized. Six customers were also detained for questioning. Isa pointed out that one of the casino's online jackpot games had bets totaling RM 200,000.

The problem in Russia is a bit of a mystery. The RIA Novosti publication reported confirmed news that an online casino had been shut down by the police. However the publication did not know the name of the online casino. This started a chain of rumors at online casino forums. In most of these rumors a particular large and well known operator in the Russian market was the center of speculation. The mystery is that this online casino is still running. Therefore no one knows which online casino has been shut down.

RIA Novosti claims to have its information directly from a Russian Ministry of the Interior spokesperson, Larisa Zhukova. Zhukova revealed some more information about this operation. She informed the publication that the online casino generated about 200,000 roubles a day in profits, which amounts to $7,000. The online casino used software from an unidentified company outside Russia and offered 470 different games.

According to Zhukova the problem went beyond providing online gambling services. The online casino is alleged to have indulged in money laundering through complex foreign bank financial movements. Over ten years the online casino is said to have made hundreds of millions of dollars in illegal profits. The owner, a 33-year-old man, has been taken into custody, along with five other employees. Computer equipment was seized together with 27 million roubles in cash (about $1 million).

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