Macau police detain pair over gaming syndicates

Police in Macau said on Sunday that they'd arrested two men for alleged illegal gambling and money laundering, and it's emerged that one of them is the chief executive of Hong Kong-listed casino operator Macau Legend Development.

"One of the men involved was responsible for operating an illegal syndicate while the other offered assistance," the police said in a statement on their official Wechat account, without naming either man.

In a statement to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, Macau Legend Development said its chief executive and controlling shareholder, Chan Weng Lin, had been arrested and detained by Macau's judicial police.

"The above incident relates to the personal affairs of Mr Chan and is not related to the group. The board does not expect the above incident to have a material adverse impact on the daily operations," Macau Legend said.

Chan is also chairman of Tak Chun Group, Macau's second-biggest junket operator. Tak Chun did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The arrests announced on Sunday come two months after Macau authorities arrested the high-profile head of Suncity Group, Alvin Chau. Suncity is Macau's leading operator of junkets, which bring VIPs from the mainland to gamble in the enclave.

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Now nearly nonexistent, the opaque VIP industry made up more than two-thirds of Macau's gambling revenue until just a few years ago, official data shows.

Police said the arrests were linked to the Suncity case in November as the two groups worked together, engaging in "illicit and criminal activities". (Reuters/RTHK)

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