Friday June 16, 2006
Bookies in Miri going mobile
MIRI: World Cup 2006 illegal bookies in this oil capital of Sarawak have gone mobile to avoid detection by the police.
They are now operating in little cell groups, staying for short spells in major hotels and apartment suites before moving to other locations for similarly short periods.
In previous major football tournaments, these bookies rented houses or apartment units for long durations and used these places to accept bets and to link up with international betting rings in other countries.
Now, they have gone mobile. By operating in this manner, they avoid suspicions and make it difficult for the police to nail them, a source told The Star.
These mobile bookies are believed to be accepting and processing bets via laptop computers, hand-held communicators and state-of-the-art handphones.
Police have stepped up ground intelligence and surveillance, believing that it is just a matter of time before they cripple the bookies.
On Wednesday, two Malaysian women, suspected of being part of an international syndicate involved in a multi-million-dollar World Cup betting operation, were arrested in Australia together with six Hong Kong residents.
The women, aged 22 and 23, were arrested in a hotel in Sydney on Tuesday morning following a three-nation joint operation to cripple the Hong Kong-based syndicate.