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Posted on: Might 23, 2021, 02:15h.
Final up to date on: Might 23, 2021, 05:28h.
Philip Conneller Learn Extra
Authorities in Macau mentioned the worth of bogus on line casino chips discovered within the playing hub’s casinos in Q1 2021 was higher than 2020s whole haul.
Macau police arrested a scammer in January for passing high-quality forgeries he had purchased on-line at an unnamed SJM on line casino. (Picture: South China Morning Submit)
Based on a newly printed crime statistics report from the Workplace of the Secretary for Safety, the full face worth of faux chips to March 31 was HKD2 million (US $257,582), in opposition to HKD1.51 million for the previous 12 months.
In all, round 65 counterfeits have been detected, 15 of which have been high-denomination $100,000 chips, which suggests critical fraud had at the least been tried.
The report declines to say which casinos have been affected and whether or not the fraudsters had been profitable when trying to change the chips for money.
Pandemic Skews Figures
It’s tough to evaluate the importance of statistics taken from a interval when Macau’s on line casino sector was so deeply impacted by the pandemic. Whereas the enclave is experiencing an financial rebound, it was below extreme journey restriction for a lot of 2020, and visitation numbers have been decimated.
However statistics for earlier years, it’s clear that incidents of faux chips are on the rise, regardless of technological enhancements that make them harder to counterfeit.
The final yr wholly unaffected by the pandemic, 2019, witnessed the best variety of fakes in three years, some 352, with a complete face worth of HKD18.5 million (US $ 2.4 million).
Lately, it has turn out to be simpler to purchase practical counterfeit chips on-line, typically through the darkish internet.
Faux Chip Scammer Arrested
In January, Macau police reported that two scammers had efficiently cashed out HKD190,000 (US $24,500), earlier than an unnamed on line casino in “town’s central district” noticed the fakes.
Based on police, the chips have been high-quality forgeries and bore the emblem of SJM Holdings. Owned by the Ho household, SJM is one among Macau’s six main licensees, or concessionaires, working some 19 casinos town.
One of many scammers was arrested. The detained suspect, a 51-year-old male from mainland China, admitted he and his confederate had purchased 150 counterfeit chips on-line for CNY60,000 (US $9,293). Every chip had a face worth of HKD5,000 (US$644).
Police mentioned the suspects gambled with the phony chips at a number of gaming tables in an try to change them for actual ones earlier than heading to the cage to money out. 4 trustworthy gamblers unwittingly obtained bogus chips from the suspects.
Fashionable on line casino chips are embedded with RFID (radio-frequency identification) — chips inside chips that make them more durable to forge. They emit indicators that may be learn by RFID-reading tools stationed at gaming tables and the on line casino cage.
Counterfeiters have been recognized to take RFID emitters from low denomination chips and embed them in excessive denomination forgeries.
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