|Whilst there has been recent added momentum to the debate regarding legal status of online gambling in Asia Pacific regions, Malaysian authorities have made an emphatic statement in the last few days regarding their view on the issue. On Sunday whilst the final in Euro 2004 was being played between Greece and Portugal, two raids were made on unconnected gambling syndicates in the country’s capital city Kuala Lumpur and the eastern city of Miri.|
The police confiscated funds equal to US$1.3 million dollars (5 million ringgit), when they broke into an apartment block where the Miri based syndicate were staying. They detained 22 people and took hold of 45 computers- the tools necessary to run the syndicate, which had links in China, Thailand, Taiwan and Hong Kong. The syndicate is believed to be part of a larger international group, and reportedly took more than two million ringgit in bets a day during the course of Euro 2004.
Three men were arrested in Kuala Lumpur on the same day, just before play in the final began. Kuala Lumpur’s deputy criminal investigation department chief Syed Ismail Syed Azizan said of the syndicate, “From our investigations, the syndicate accepted a minimum bet of between 100,000 ringgit and 200,000 ringgit per match.”