The Judiciary Police (PJ) arrested 11 men and women from the mainland on Tuesday for alleged membership of a loan-sharking gang which for six months had offered casino patrons gambling loans, according to The Macau Post Daily.
PJ spokesman Choi Ian Fai announced details of the case during a special press conference on Wednesday. The five male and six female suspects are aged between 22 and 44, Choi said.
PJ officers recently received information that a number of mainlanders were providing gamblers with loans in casinos and that they were based in a residential flat in Taipa, according to Choi.
On Tuesday morning, PJ officers entered the flat, where the 11 suspects were apprehended and PJ officers found over 1,000 business cards, Choi said.
The 11 suspects admitted that they had been hired by the kingpin of a loan-sharking gang and that they asked gamblers, inside or outside casinos, if they would like to get a gambling loan and gave them their business card, according to Choi.
The business cards offered gamblers the gang’s “24-hour service to get funds”. The cards also indicated that three kinds of credit cards could be used to get the instant gambling loans.
The police are looking for the kingpin – a man from the mainland, Choi said.
The gang’s loan-sharking activities had been running for six months, Choi said, adding that the suspects were from various provinces in the mainland.
The suspects told PJ officers that they received 30 percent of the loans’ interest, while the kingpin got 70 percent, according to Choi.
Choi said the police were still investigating how much the loan-sharking gang had lent to gamblers. Choi did not say how much interest the gang charged.
Choi said the 11 suspects would be transferred to the Public Prosecution Office (MP) for possible arraignments on charges of organised crime membership and usury.