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China continues crackdown on cross-border gambling activity

| By Marese O'Hagan
China’s Ministry of Public Security has vowed to continue the enforcement of stringent anti-gambling punishments following a rise in cross-border gambling.
China lottery July

According to the Ministry of Public Security, police operations since 2020 have uncovered 17,000 cross-border gambling incidents and apprehended more than 110,000 suspects. More than 3,400 online gambling platforms and 2,800 gambling payment platforms were also discovered and shut down.

Zhao Kezhi, state councillor and minister of public security, laid out China’s plans to constrain illegal gambling at a third gambling crackdown meeting on 8 April.

Zhao praised the efforts of police involved in the operations and vowed to continue these “strict measures” in an effort to preserve China’s “economic security, social stability and national image”.

He said “severe punishments” will be imposed on offenders, with “penalties… applied to the highest standards”.

China’s previous efforts to crack down on illegal gambling operations led to the creation of an amnesty in February 2021, where individuals who confessed their involvement in illegal gambling could avoid serious punishment by providing pertinent information.

Last year the Chinese government cancelled the passports of citizens working for an online gambling business in the Philippines, effectively banning them from fleeing the country.

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