Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City police have detained 59 people linked to the biggest illegal online gambling ring ever uncovered by Vietnamese authorities. The cryptocurrency gambling ring had transactions totaling more than US$3.8 billion, which includes the total gamblers put in the ring but excludes reciprocal money from the dealer.
According to the report from state-owned broadcaster VTV, gamblers in the ring registered cryptocurrency wallets on a foreign platform called Remitano to buy cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum or USDT, also known as Tether, they would then use the crypto to gamble on websites Swiftonline.live and Nagaclubs.com.
Subjects admitted to authorities that they organized online gambling on those sites, which VTV reported were intermediaries to Evolution to earn commissions. When there were a large number of players, they crashed the websites in order to appropriate money from the digital wallets, the report said. “This is a case of clear abuse of the Evolution brand,” Carl Linton, head of investor relations at Evolution told Bloomberg. “The sites mentioned in the article are not customers of Evolution and our games are not accessible through these sites.”
He added: “We take this situation very seriously, the aggregator connected to these sites has been identified and notified to take immediate action towards their customer and we reserve the right to make sure that our demands are fully enforced.”
Ho Chi Minh City Police also detained items including 40 laptops, 79 cellphones, ATM cards, vehicles, and cash worth more than 2.9 billion dong (US$130,000), according to Bloomberg.
Fraudulent activity is one of the main concerns about cryptocurrencies from regulators globally, in particular, because many participants can transact across country borders and act with a relative degree of anonymity. Crypto-linked fraud is costing victims around the globe billions of dollars annually.