1/23/2012 : PHILIPPINE COURT RULES NO LAW AGAINST OPERATING ONLINE CASINO
Dismisses illegal internet gambling charge
An illegal gambling charge filed by the department of justice back in 2006 against British Grand Vision International Col, Inc. – a company operating an online casino in the Clark Special Economic Zone in Angeles City in Pampanga, Philippines – has been dismissed five years later by the Philippine Court of Appeals Sixth Division.
Edgar Lim, founder of the firm, and his Taiwanese partners and employees (40 co-respondents in all) were charged with illegal internet gambling in 2006 following the seizure of P30 million worth of equipment from the company's premises by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).
Following a dismissal of the charges by the Angeles City prosecutor's office, the NBI and Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) filed a petition for a review of the case before then Justice Secretary Raul Gonzalez who reversed the prosecutors ruling. Lim applied for leave to appeal and the case was elevated to the Court of Appeals.
Associate Justice Amelita Tolentino of the Court of Appeals granted the petition filed by Lim, seeking to nullify the resolution issued by the Department of Justice (DOJ) on February 19, 2009, which ordered his indictment along with his Taiwanese partners for illegal gambling, reported Manilla Today.
Tolentino ruled that a careful reading of Section 1 of PD 1602 clearly showed that “there is nothing in it which would indicate that internet gambling or on-line casino is among those illegal acts penalized by the said law."
"Well settled is the principle that there is no crime when there is no law penalizing it,” added Tolentino.