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Japan arrests suspects involved in illegal mahjong betting website

February 21, 2024 Japan Crime & LegaliGaming & Gambling

In relation to an illicit mahjong betting website, the Kyoto Prefectural Police in Japan detained a number of individuals on Monday, among them was an American citizen.

A 36-year-old American resident of Urayasu, Chiba Prefecture named Randall Aaron Asher and six other individuals are charged with making around JPY 2.3 billion ($15.3 million) using the Dora Mahjong website over a period of more than ten years. The organization of this business is now being investigated by the authorities. This is the first instance of suspected online casino operators being apprehended in Japan.

The arrest warrants state that between March and December 2023, Asher and his accomplices, who range in age from 25 to 47, allegedly collected service fees while allowing six local customers to gamble on the website. Asher and two other individuals have confessed to the accusations, but the other four have partially denied their involvement, claiming unaware of any misconduct.

Although it is illegal to gamble outside of authorized locations in Japan, it may be difficult to prosecute online casinos under Japanese law since they run on foreign servers. The seven terrorists were apprehended when Kyoto police learned that they had carried out their plans inside of Japan. Users of the website are the subject of ongoing investigations, which are primarily focused on claims of compulsive gambling and other potential violations.

Original story by: Asia Gaming Brief

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