HONG KONG, Nov 28 (Reuters) - Macau police said on Sunday
they had arrested 11 people in an investigation into an illegal
gambling and money-laundering syndicate, a day after businessman
Alvin Chau https://www.reuters.com/world/china/chinas-wenzhou-issues-arrest-warrant-macau-junket-mogul-chau-2021-11-27,
who organises trips to Asian casinos for big spending gamblers,
was questioned at a police station.
The police said in a statement that people involved in the
case acknowledged the group had operated gambling websites or
telemarketing activities in other places.
Hong Kong's South China Morning Post reported that at a news
conference on Sunday, Macau's judiciary police did not name the
individuals but said they included a 47-year-old Macau
businessman surnamed Chau.
It was not clear if this was Alvin Chau, who is chairman of
Suncity Group Holdings Ltd. He is also the founder of
a separate legal entity also called Suncity, the special
administrative region's biggest "junket operator", which runs
VIP gambling rooms across Asia.
Junket operators are go-betweens who bring high rollers to
play at casinos, extending them credit and collecting on their
debts. Macau itself is known as the Las Vegas of Asia and has
grown rich from the gambling industry.
The Suncity junket operator could not be reached for
comment. Representatives of the Hong Kong-listed Sun City Group
Holdings could not be reached by phone and did not respond to
email inquiries seeking comment on the company's or Chau's
A Macau judiciary police duty spokesperson did not respond
to phone calls seeking comment.
Authorities in the eastern Chinese city of Wenzhou said on
Friday that an investigation had found Alvin Chau formed a
junket agent network in the mainland to help citizens engage in
offshore and cross-border gambling activities.
The Macau government said on Saturday he was taken to the
police station for questioning, based on earlier evidence and
after it received a notification about the arrest warrant from
the mainland authorities.
GGRAsia, a news outlet on the Asia casino industry, quoted a
Suncity spokesperson as saying by email early on Saturday: "All
businesses are normally operating in accordance with the law and
under the supervision of the Macau Special Administrative Region
Chau is also a controlling shareholder of Sun Entertainment
Group Ltd., a film production and cremation services
firm, which said in a Sunday exchange filing its board had noted
news coverage about the investigations in Wenzhou and Macau.
"The Board wishes to emphasis that the News Coverage is
relating to the personal affairs of Mr. Chau. The Board is of
the view that the Incident does not have any material impact on
the financial position, business nor operation of the Group,"
the filing said.
(Reporting by Alun John; Editing by William Mallard and Angus