Online betting firm accused of defying PCSO directive

By: Doris C. Dumlao, March 18th, 2013 05:02 AM

MANILA, Philippines—The local gaming unit of Malaysian group Berjaya has accused an online betting company of engaging in what it described as “unauthorized business similar to jueteng” in defiance of a Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) order.

The legal counsel for Berjaya-owned Philippine Gaming Management Corp. (PGMC)—which supplies lotto equipment to PCSO for Luzon—complained to PCSO that World Reliance Trading Corp. was still accepting bets from the public despite PCSO’s order last week for the company to “hold in abeyance” its operations.

PGMC legal counsel Jose Bernas also asked why PCSO had instructed WRT only to “hold in abeyance” its operations when it “admitted that the business was unauthorized and illegal.”

Bernas also wondered why WRT was so bold as to defy PCSO. “Something is very wrong here and I don’t think it has something to do with ineptitude. Was an official order really issued?”

Tolerating this scheme could completely erode the public’s confidence in lotto and prejudice online lottery earnings, he said.

PGMC claimed that WRT was still accepting bets even after PCSO issued the order last Wednesday.

WRT, through its website, accepts bets through text messaging via Globe or TM SIM and accepts payments through GCash.

Mobile Lotto is described as a new service that enables Globe and TM subscribers to join and play in the PCSO Lottery using their mobile phones.

In a statement, PGMC said WRT’s operations could be likened to jueteng and a bookie operations because the bettor gives his money to WRT, which may or may not remit it to PCSO.

In the legitimate lotto business, PGMC said the agents input the chosen numbers and print the bettor’s slip using PGMG-supplied equipment, which is electronically linked to and operated by PCSO to protect the betting public.

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