In a recent wave of gambling-related kidnappings in the Philippines, police have responded with 8 arrests. Two of these kidnappers were Chinese nationals who claimed they worked for Suncity, the largest Asian VIP junket tour operator.
The Anti-Kidnapping Group (AKG) of the Philippine National Police (PNP) hauled in 6 Filipinos and 2 Chinese nationals who lured gamblers to casinos, loaned them money, then kidnapped them when they lost the money.
Baiting the Hook
The 2 Chinese kidnappers stand accused of luring 2 of their countrymen to the Okada Manila casino for a 3-day gambling binge. The 2 gamblers were persuaded to gamble at a VIP room operated by Suncity, the large gambling junket tour operator out of China.
The 2 gamblers wired their ‘hosts’ $140,000 to convert to casino chips. After a few hours, the gamblers had lost their money, and returned to their casino hotel room. After attempts to draw the gamblers back to the tables to get them to gamble more failed, they blocked them from leaving the room. One of the kidnappers slept in front of their hotel room door to prevent them from leaving.
The victims contacted hotel staff, who contacted the AKG, which responded by arresting the 2 kidnappers. It is unclear whether or not the 2 kidnappers actually work for Suncity, but since gambling junkets face constant pressure from China, Suncity is skating on thin ice.
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