Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Betting crackdown called for

Betting crackdown called for

A croupier sits at a game table in a Bavet casino earlier this year as the game is transmitted to patrons via webcam.
A croupier sits at a game table in a Bavet casino earlier this year as the game is transmitted to patrons via webcam. Victoria Mørck Madsen

Betting crackdown called for

Minister of Interior Sar Kheng in a meeting yesterday called on authorities at all levels to strengthen their enforcement of a long-standing ban on citizens gambling, which has been only sporadically enforced over the years.

“I request to relevant institutions to put in place mechanisms, and for our provincial, district and military police to work together to crack down on illegal gambling,” Kheng told assembled ministry officials.

Small-time gambling on cards and cockfights remains common across the Kingdom, and bans on Cambodians gambling in established casinos have proven easy to flout in the past.

However, according to National Police spokesman Kirth Chantharith, internal security officers have in past months been stationed outside casinos to perform checks and prohibit the entrance of Cambodians, a move he described to have yielded “good results”.

“[We] have [also] received good results for the [overall] crackdown and prevented gambling,” he said, adding that a total of 520 cases of gambling – ranging from lotteries to cockfights to football betting – were prevented in the past 10 months.Phnom Penh had the most cases, with 110; followed by Kratie, with 57; and casino hotspot Preah Sihanouk, with 39.

“The owners of the casinos [sometimes] do not cooperate with armed forces because they are only concerned about having more clients.”

He also noted that some local gambling rings “are protected and intervened in by backers”, making “local forces hesitate to [raid them]”.

Chantharith also acknowledged that there were “a few authorities involved in gambling”, but declined to comment further.

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Education’ a priority traffic-law penalty

    A top National Police official on June 21 neither rejected nor confirmed the authenticity of a leaked audio message, which has gone viral on social media, on a waiver of fines for a number of road traffic-related offences. General Him Yan, deputy National Police chief in

  • Pursat Ford assembly plant opens

    The Kingdom’s first Ford assembly plant was inaugurated on June 16 in Pursat province amid rising demand for brand-new vehicles among Cambodians. The facility is seen as a game changer for the domestic automobile industry, which could bring a wave of investors seeking to cash

  • Siem Reap’s $18M zoo said to educate public, help wildlife

    Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium Co Ltd has invested $18 million in a zoo in Siem Reap province, which will be opened in October to educate and promote animal conservation as well as attract national and international tourists. Currently, the Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium is building the

  • Angkor photo rules clarified

    The Apsara National Authority (ANA) denied that it had banned the use of camera tripods in the Angkor Archaeological Park, explaining that the confusion stemmed from a long-standing rule which required commercial photographers and videographers to apply for permission to film. The explanation followed a

  • $50B infrastructure plan en route

    The government’s upcoming $50 billion,10-year infrastructure master plan will provide tremendous investment opportunities for domestic and foreign entities, transport experts and economists say. Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol revealed the plan to Japanese ambassador to Cambodia Masahiro Mikami on June 15. At

  • Nestle’s debut may spur dairy market

    Leading confectionery manufacturer Nestle plans to invest in Cambodia by setting up an operation in the near future, a move majorly hailed by local dairy farmers as a means of boosting the fresh milk market in the Kingdom. During a visit by a delegation led