Evolution Gaming Named in Vietnam Bust of Alleged Illegal $3.8B Online Gambling Ring

Posted on: December 3, 2021, 10:02h. 

Last updated on: December 3, 2021, 10:31h.

Evolution Gaming, a subsidiary of Evolution AB in Sweden, was reportedly involved in a massive illegal online gambling ring in Vietnam that allegedly involved some $3.8 billion in revenue.

Evolution Gaming Vietnam gambling bust
Vietnam police shared this photo of vehicles and motorcycles that were confiscated during a bust of an alleged illegal online gambling operation that involved over $3.8 billion in revenue. Legal authorities in the Southeast Asia country say Evolution Gaming platforms were unlawfully accessed in the scheme. (Image: Vietnam Television)

Evolution Gaming is facing a regulatory complaint in New Jersey. That matter is contending that the business-to-business live table game operator allows its dealers to be accessed in countries where such online gambling is illegal. The grievance also alleges that Evolution does business in countries that are under US sanctions, including Iraq, Syria, and Sudan.

Vietnam Television (VTV), the country’s state-owned broadcaster, broke the news yesterday that authorities had infiltrated an alleged massive online cryptocurrency gambling ring. That raid resulted in at least 59 people being detained. Several of the iGaming platforms reportedly used are Evolution-run networks, including NagaClubs.

Law enforcement says the ring was allegedly orchestrated by four Vietnamese citizens. Players were told to create cryptocurrency accounts and buy such digital funds as Ethereum, Tether, and Tron, and then gamble on private networks linked to the online casinos.

Those detained admitted to authorities that they received affiliate commissions from Evolution for bringing the sites Vietnamese gamblers.

Massive Sting

Vietnam’s Cybersecurity and High-Tech Crime Prevention and Control Department, the Criminal Police Department, and the Ho Chi Minh City Police Department jointly infiltrated the alleged illegal internet gaming network. Authorities say the ring involved more than $3.8 billion in transactions.

Police confiscated from the alleged operation’s main headquarters 40 laptops, 79 cellphones, ATM cards, vehicles, and cash totaling approximately $130,000.

Gambling is illegal for Vietnamese residents. The country’s six land-based casinos are reserved for foreigners only. All forms of gambling over the internet are illegal.

Those detained, if charged and convicted, could face severe penalties. In 2018, a man found guilty of operating an illegal online sports betting network that involved $26 million worth of bets was sentenced to nine years in prison.

Probe Remains Mystery

Vietnam’s bust of the alleged online casino scheme appears unrelated to the Evolution complaint brought by an anonymous US-based interest. The anonymous complainant conducted a probe into Evolution’s business operations throughout the world

In the 120-page complaint, the group makes no mention of its investigators accessing Evolution live table games online in Vietnam.

Casino.org has made repeated attempts to contact the communications person who is representing the anonymous US interest regarding the client and their motive. Those requests have been unsuccessful.

Evolution has denied that its remote table game studios can be accessed in unlawful countries and jurisdictions. The company contends that the “control of who plays the games is a strict responsibility” of the licensed online casino.

Evolution Gaming is the largest live table game operator in the country. Notable clients that incorporate Evolution’s live dealer remote studios into their iGaming platforms include FanDuel, DraftKings, and Caesars.