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Monday, June 24, 2024

NCR cops arrest 11 in anti-illegal gambling operations in Parañaque

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The National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) has announced the arrest of at least 11 individuals in an anti-illegal online gambling operation in Parañaque City.

The operation, which was conducted on Friday in coordination with the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR), also resulted in the seizure of computer sets and other electronic devices used in the illegal business.

NCRPO director Maj. Gen. Jose Melencio Nartatez Jr. said the raid was made after Parañaque City Regional Trial Court Executive Judge Jaime Guray issued a warrant against the establishment situated at BF Northwest Subdivision in Barangay BF Homes.

Arrested were Encar Cordova, Giovanni Bautista, Jian Paolo Mallari, Jeromell Lioc, Mico Christopher Alcala, Benjamin Edgar Almazco, Jeffrey Simoza, John Erick Sebastian, Erwin Asis, John Marie, and Christopher Rick Cabatbat.

The suspects were caught red handed operating the illegal onlinegaming platform “Big Bet”.

“They scammed clients and lost the money they had spent on the casino,” said Nartatez.

The suspects are now detained at the NCRPO detention cell and will be charged with violating Presidential Decree 1602 (Prescribing Stiffer Penalties on Illegal Gambling) and Republic Act (Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012) before the prosecutor’s office in Parañaque City.

Onsite examination revealed that the confiscated gadgets contained evidence of the group’s illegal online activities.

Nartatez said the suspects were previously employees of a POGO (Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators) company who started their own online casino hub, earning around P200 million in 2022.

Further investigation revealed that one of the suspects, Cabatbat, has a pending arrest warrant for the crime of murder and was tagged as the Most Wanted Person in Central Luzon.

The operation was part of a unified effort to intensify the fight against illegal online gambling, with PAGCOR collaborating with law enforcement authorities and the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency.

Authorities advises the public to stop patronizing illegal online gaming sites and play on legal platforms to protect themselves.

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