44 suspects arrested in gambling site crackdown

44 suspects arrested in gambling site crackdown

(Photo: Freepik.com)
(Photo: Freepik.com)

The police have arrested 44 suspects in connection to 525 online gambling websites and have seized almost 2,000 assets worth 69 million baht.

Digital Economy and Society Minister Prasert Chantararuangthong, chief of the Central Investigation Bureau (CIB), together with Pol Lt Gen Jirabhop Bhuridej and other high-ranking police officers, released a statement Thursday about the arrests.

It said the 44 suspects included seven people who ran the gambling websites and five beneficiaries of the gambling network.

In addition to that group of 12 were eight individuals who were hired to make ATM transactions for the network and 24 people who were involved in an operation that supplied mule accounts to the network.

Pol Lt Gen Jirabhop said the suspects worked together as a syndicate.

Those who supplied mule accounts earned up to 15,000 baht, while those making ATM transactions were paid up to 50,000 baht per transaction, he said.

The team behind the websites, which consisted of social media admins, graphic designers, account creators, and others, were paid salaries and bonuses by the website owners, he added.

Among the 44 people were 33-year-old Arrun Mongkolmuang and her 27-year-old girlfriend Sunanta Khammadee, a deputy director of a nursery school in Roi Et.

The couple ran a buffalo farm in the province and used it to mask their operation supplying mule accounts.

As for the assets, the police seized 1,913 items worth 69 million baht from the network.

They ranged from gold bullion and ornaments to expensive breeder buffaloes.

Mr Prasert said the arrest was a collaborative effort between the Digital Economy and Society Ministry and the CIB.

Pol Lt Gen Jirabhop said the CIB spent almost three months on the investigation leading up to the arrests in the early hours of March 14.

Meanwhile, the Technology Crime Suppression Division disclosed that it recently raided a house in Nong Khai connected to the "UFA" gambling site and also seized more than 16 million baht in cash.

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