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Legislation

A new illegal gambling law will impose harsher penalties

Tuesday 20 de February 2024 / 12:00

2 minutos de lectura

(Macau).- Macau's Legislative Assembly has published the draft of a new bill called “Law to combat illegal gambling crimes”, which limit gambling crimes and increase penalties for those who commit them.

A new illegal gambling law will impose harsher penalties

The draft of a new illegal gambling bill that will introduce tougher punishments for offenders has been submitted to the Legislative Assembly for review, according to multiple local media reports.

The government-proposed revision of the pre-existing legislation will see the imprisonment term for those who conduct illegal gambling operations raised from the existing three years to between one and eight years 

Under the new law, individuals participating in illegal gambling will be handed a maximum sentence of six months, while those who are present in an unlawful gambling venue will be liable to 90 days. 

Offenders could also face a range of additional punishments under the new framework. For non-residents, this could mean being barred from the city for a duration of five to ten years. Other penalties for lawbreakers could include a ban from specific venues and engagement in certain occupations and activities for a period spanning two to ten years. 

Meanwhile, illicit money lending or loan sharking will carry a prison sentence of up to five years. Currently, the penalty for such a crime carries a maximum sentence of three years.

Online gambling is also targeted in the new bill, which proposes a punishment of up to six months in prison for those who make illicit online bets. Gambling in public areas will also incur a higher fine, with the penalty increasing from the current range of 300 patacas to 1,000 patacas to fines between 1,500 patacas and 5,000 patacas. 

The new illegal gambling crime law finished the drafting stage  on 11 December 2023, although the specifics of the law were only unveiled this week. If the bill passes, it will replace the current legislation, which dates back to 1996.

The law is part of the government’s efforts to double down on its laws against illicit gaming in the city, following the high-profile arrest of junket operators such as Alvin Chau and Levo Chan. 

Categoría:Legislation

Tags: Sin tags

País: Macao

Región: Asia

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