After two days spent tracking, on Tuesday the Vietnamese Criminal Police Department (C02) along with professional units of the Ministry of Public Security, the Public Security Department of Ho Chi Minh City, and Dong Nai Province, raided 15 locations in Ho Chi Minh City and Dong Nai Province. Fourteen individuals were arrested and will be investigated for gambling and organizing gambling.
Ring Members Arrested, Exhibits of Gambling Seized
The local authorities broke up an online soccer gambling ring, whose transactions reached VND 30 trillion ($1.2 billion). Many exhibits, which served for gambling, were seized. The police further established that the Vietnamese individuals, who participated in the gambling ring, collaborated with a banker based in Cambodia. They organized gambling practices in Ho Chi Minh City and the provinces nearby as traditional and unsecured gambling.
The large-scale betting racket used various websites such as bong88.com, Sobet.com, SV288.com, and Agbong88.com to take wagers from punters amounting to thousands of billions of Vietnamese dong. The ring has operated for approximately three years. Betting was focused mainly on soccer, cockfighting, and lottery games, and the wagers often reached VND100 billion ($4 million) a week. The state media further reports that online soccer gambling was for clients who were based mainly in southern Vietnam.
In Vietnam, seven members of the ring served as general agents and managed betting accounts. Other members were responsible for providing a technology network, handling complaints of punters, and delivering and receiving betting money.
Before the start of the 2022 World Cup, the senior members of the racket left Ho Chi Minh City and went to neighboring provinces where they operated the ring from a distance.
The investigation of the case is still ongoing.
Many Cases of Busted Gambling Rings
On Monday, police in Nghe An province arrested 11 people on similar charges in a separate racket. The authorities found a cryptocurrency ring worth nearly $3.8 billion last year. In another case, an online soccer betting ring worth over VND1 trillion ($40.3 million) was busted by the police in the northern province of Bac Ninh just days before the opening of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. Six individuals were arrested on charges of gambling and organizing gambling.
Gambling is illegal in Vietnam except at certain casinos, which are mostly only open to foreigners and the local police often conduct raids every World Cup season. Vietnamese, who want to bet in casinos, need to meet certain financial and other requirements. Fines of VND10-50 million ($430-2,150) and imprisonment of between three and seven years could be imposed on those who are involved in gambling and organizing related gaming activities.