Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Hockry says Holiday casino must close under new gaming law

Hockry says Holiday casino must close under new gaming law

Hockry says Holiday casino must close under new gaming law

PARLIAMENT has unanimously approved legislation aimed at cracking down on illegal

gambling by imposing prison sentences and fines on violators.

"This law will outlaw all gambling houses that have been authorized by previous

administrations," Co-Interior Minister You Hockry said in reference to establishments

operating gaming tables under agreements with the pre-May 1993 socialist government.

The government last year signed an agreement with the Ariston company of Malaysia

granting it exclusive rights to operate casinos in Cambodia while the authorities

forced nine other prominent Phnom Penh gambling houses to close down in September.

The Holiday International has managed to keep its tables open under its pre-1993

election agreement while others have quietly reopened and scores of small dens still

tout for clients in the absence of laws.

When asked whether the new law would affect the Holiday, Hockry said: "If we

respect the law, I think that must close too."

The law passed provides for jail terms of up to five years and a maximum fine of

50 million riels for anyone convicted of running an illegal gambling center, while

punters at such houses face a fine and up to a year in prison.

The legislation also penalizes those who import or sell equipment that can be used

for illegal gambling and authorizes the government to seize any property and assests

of establishments busted by the authorities.

Any officials who protect or authorize the opening of a gambling den or casino face

fines and imprisonment of up to five years.

"It's a good law," said Tourism Minister Veng Sereyvuth, whose ministry

has helped draft a complimentary casino law that has yet to be tabled before Parliament.

Hockry, who reckoned the new law would have a positive effect on society, said the

casino law would enshrine the principle of barring Cambodians from licensed casinos.

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

  • Volunteer scheme to foster ‘virtuous’ humanitarian spirit

    A senior education official said volunteer work contributes to solidarity and promotes a virtuous humanitarian spirit among the youth and communities. Serei Chumneas, undersecretary of state at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, made the comment during the opening of a training programme called “

  • 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

  • $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

  • Chinese firms unveil preliminary results on metro, monorail for capital

    Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol and representatives from China Road and Bridge Corp (CRBC) and its parent company, the state-owned China Communications Construction Co Ltd (CCCC), met on June 24 for talks on results of the firms’ preliminary study on a potential metro