Chinese Gov’t starts online platform for citizen reports on overseas gambling-related crimes

The Chinese Ministry of Public Security has inaugurated a citizen cross-border gambling reporting platform as part of its large scale crackdown on overseas illegal gambling activities.

The Ministry indicated that, in order to severely crack down and control illegal and criminal activities of cross-border gambling and facilitate their reporting by the general public, it has launched a comprehensive reporting platform.

This year, the Chinese government has plans to increase and widen its efforts to combat illegal, cross-border online gambling in the country, and the central government has put pressure on neighbouring countries, including Cambodia and the Philippines, to crack down on online gaming activities they see as targeting Chinese nationals.

According to the Ministry, reports can be submitted by, but not limited to, Chinese citizens on other Chinese citizens who are engaged in ‘overseas gambling’, online gambling, or who work in overseas casinos.

Reports can also be submitted to denounce Chinese citizens who engage with units or individuals who make arrangements for other Chinese citizens to go to foreign countries for gambling purposes, or who provide fund settlement services or cyber technology support for cross-border gambling.

Complaints can also be filed on any other crimes related to cross-border gambling, such as fraud, money laundering, kidnapping, unlawful detainment, human abduction and trafficking, and illegal entrance into a foreign country.

The Ministry of Public Security stated that it will reward those who verify the clues and play an important role.

Real-name crime reporting is preferred, and if the people reporting are asked to cooperate with the investigation they have to ‘report accurately and provide authentic evidence’.

‘We encourage the public to report crimes. Whoever provides verified and vital clues, shall be given rewards. Whoever fabricates a case or frames up an innocent individual or unit, shall be treated sternly in accordance with relevant laws and regulations’, the Ministry states in the platform.

At the same time, people involved in gambling activities are encouraged to expose related illegal crimes and ‘strive for leniency’ according to law.

The reporting platform – available in English and Chinese – offers two options: to report cases involving ‘physical casinos’ and ‘online gambling’, and to check the progress of any report submitted.

If one selects the option to report crimes involving land-based casinos, they are asked to report the name and address of the casino, the country and region where it is located, if the casino has a gambling license, and if it provides online gambling services, plus any other evidence and information.

Aside from the online platform, people can also email complaints to the Ministry of Public Security’s email box or fax number.

Chinese government figures have indicated that public security agencies detected more than 7,200 criminal cases of online gambling in 2019, arresting 25,000 people, and seized or froze over RMB18 billion in gambling-related funds.