Macau’s Court of First Instance has decided not to include civil claims in the trial of gambling junket head Levo Chan Weng Lin (pictured in a file photo) and other defendants linked to junket brand Tak Chun. That was in order to expedite the handling of the criminal allegations, according to a decision from the court.
The information was reported on Wednesday by the Portuguese-language service of public broadcaster TDM. The report said the parties seeking damages were informed on Tuesday of the court’s decision.
The trial of Mr Chan and the other defendants is set to begin on December 5, according to the schedule published on the website of Macau’s Court of First Instance. Mr Chan has been in pre-trial detention since his arrest in late January.
Macau’s Public Prosecutions Office said in January that Mr Chan, the leader of Tak Chun, was suspected of illegal running of gambling operations and money laundering. In total, nine people have been indicted under the same criminal case.
A number of the city’s casino operators, as well as the Public Prosecutions Office on behalf of the Macau government, were seeking damages over losses allegedly caused by the defendants.
TDM reported that the court’s decision stated that the eventual value of the claim for civil damages was “compatible” with the “content of the criminal complaint”.
According to the report, Wynn Macau Ltd, Sands China Ltd, SJM Holdings Ltd, and MGM China Holdings Ltd were – via their locally-incorporated subsidiaries – claiming millions of U.S. dollars from the defendants.
A similar approach was taken in the proceedings related to the trial of Alvin Chau Cheok Wa and other defendants linked to the now-defunct Macau casino junket Suncity Group Ltd. In mid-September, the court handling that trial decided that criminal and civil proceedings should run separately.
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