Authorities in China have broken up a crypto gambling ring that is involved with world cup betting. This is the first major crime involving cryptocurrencies and sports betting in the country. They say the ring was hosting over 10 billion Yuan ($1.5 billion) worth of crypto bets.
In a statement released on Thursday, Southern Guangdong police said they had arrested six suspects of the betting syndicate and frozen about 5 million Yuan that was held in their bank accounts. Also, they have seized cryptocurrencies worth over 10 million Yuan they owned.
The crypto gambling ring ran on the dark web, a section of the internet that is not indexed by traditional search engines like Google and only accepts crypto coins like Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum. The police say the gambling ring had been in operation for the past eight months and it had managed to attract over 330,000 registered users from different countries around the globe.
Also, the gambling platform had managed to recruit a strong army of about 8,000 agents who were responsible for recruiting new members and in the process earning commissions.
According to the statement, the crypto gambling ring saw a loophole in the lack of proper regulation of virtual currencies in the country and used it to make huge profits.
Since the start of the world cup last month, authorities in China have thwarted a string of gambling rings. Last week over 40 suspects were arrested by police in Beijing as they were linked to an online gambling ring that had bets worth over 320 million Yuan.
In a separate incidence, the Guangdong police have said that they have arrested 540 suspects that are linked to 20 gambling rings and in the process froze over 260 million yuan-linked to the criminal activities.
The Chinese government has been tough on cryptocurrencies and last September it shut down all local cryptocurrency exchanges and also banned ICOs.
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