Friday October 3,3014 : BET365 PROFITS FROM CHINESE PUNTERS
Damning report published by leading British newspaper
Leading British newspaper The Guardian has published an extensive report suggesting that gambling firm Bet365 is knowingly flouting Chinese law in offering online gambling to Chinese punters.
The Guardian bases its report on documents it says it has in its possession, interviews with former and current bet365 employees, Freedom of information requests made to the UK Gambling Commission and an analysis of foreign-language media reports.
According to the report, The Guardian alleges the company, which has no physical presence or assets in China, operates one of the most successful online gambling services accessible from inside China, frequently rotates its website addresses in China making site closures by local regulators difficult, has a large call centre staffed by Chinese-speaking workers and has constructed a complex payments system allowing it to take bets placed using the China currency renminbi.
Local Chinese media reports confirm bet365's market participation with four bet365 customers in Jiangxi province arrested for gambling on bet365 websites and two men jailed for promoting the gambling operation on their blogs,the report says.
The Guardian says only half of the GBP 1.3 Billion the group reported in 2013 was derived from licenced jurisdictions surmising, in consultation with an unnamed industry specialist, that the remainder must have come from Asia, and principally China.
In a response to questions posed by the newspaper, bet365 denied any wrong-doing saying:
“There is no legalization that expressly prohibits the supply of remote gambling services into China by operators who are based outside China. Bet365 has no people, assets or infrastructure in China and does not engage any agents, aggregators or intermediaries, for any purpose, in China.
“In the view of bet365, and its lawyers, Chinese law does not extend to the provision of services into China by gambling operators and service providers who themselves have no nexus with the territory. Any allegation of illegality on the part of bet365 is therefore untrue.”
The full report can be accessed at: http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/oct/03/bet365-profit-china-online-gambling