It vows to destroy criminal networks that run online gambling ops to lure Chinese players
Beijing vowed to crack down on gangs setting up online casinos in the Philippines to lure Chinese players and launder money out of the mainland.
A statement from the Chinese embassy in Manila said China would “carry out more special operations” to “destroy networks of criminal organisations” running offshore gaming operations in the Philippines.
The embassy said a huge number of Chinese from the mainland had been illegally recruited to work for these syndicates in the Philippines under conditions it described as “slavery”.
“Their passports are taken away or confiscated by the Philippine employers. They are confined to live and work in certain designated places and some of them have been subjected to extortion, physical abuse and torture as well as other ill-treatment,” said the embassy.
By some estimates, at least 100,000 Chinese nationals, many of them undocumented, have moved to Manila to work for gambling companies as marketing agents, tech support specialists and engineers – all to serve the Mandarin-speaking clientele.
China’s growing footprint in the Philippines has led to spiralling property prices.
In the prime Manila Bay area, where most online casinos operate, home prices surged by a record 27 per cent in the last quarter of 2017.