Macau’s Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau, also known by its Portuguese acronym DICJ, confirmed to GGRAsia late on Tuesday that it had met that day with representatives of Macau junket investor Suncity Group. The casino regulator said the meeting was to better “understand the situation” regarding claims that the brand was involved in “online gaming” and “proxy betting” activities.
State-backed Economic Information Daily, an affiliate of Chinese official news agency Xinhua, said in a Monday report that it had contacted about “30 players” said to have used online gaming services associated with the Suncity brand. The outlet alleged that through Suncity Group’s promoted gaming venues in Macau, the brand had signed up mainland Chinese patrons for an online gaming application available outside Macau.
Privately-held Suncity Group hit back in a Monday rebuttal, saying it “strongly condemns” the Economic Information Daily report. The firm added the report was “false” and contained content that was “mostly conjectures”. It “seriously damages” the group’s corporate reputation, the rebuttal added.
Suncity Group, controlled by Alvin Chau Cheok Wa, stated: “Our company’s VIP gaming promotion business is legal, and never owned any gaming venues or gaming tables. Our company also does not operate any online gaming business.”
In Tuesday’s emailed statement to GGRAsia, Macau’s casino regulator stated that any violations of local laws, or even of regulations in places outside Macau, could potentially affect the suitability of a junket promoter in Macau; in such cases, the bureau would “take serious action”.
DICJ said additionally that online gambling in Macau is illegal, as well as conducting any online gaming-related activities within the city.
The casino regulator issued guidance in 2016 that it wished to see an end to so-called proxy gambling in Macau casinos. No information has subsequently emerged locally to suggest the junket sector within Macau was breaching that guideline.
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