Taiwan authorities are seeking an overhaul to gambling laws, a step that could criminalise online gambling. If fresh legislation is authorised, lawbreakers could be fined up to $1,600.
In early September, the Taiwan Ministry of Justice submitted a draft amendment. This application seeks to amend Article 266 Taiwan Criminal Code.
If this shift is authorised, gambling through telecommunications facilities, electronic communications, internet or other comparable means would be a criminal offence for any Taiwan citizen.
Current country gambling laws do not encompass online gambling and are outdated. The Taiwanese Government claims internet gamblers need a stiffer punishment to deter them. Authorities believe online gambling causes significant family and social issues.
This draft law must now be regarded and approved by the state legislature before coming into force.
There are a number of reasons for the needed changes, including a number of recent instances where accused persons facing online gambling fees were let off. Charges were declined following an appeal mechanism. This resulted to govt taking swift intervention to attempt and consolidate the gambling laws of the country.
Current gambling laws simply state that people playing in a “public place or a place open to the public” will receive a penalty.
In latest instances, the Taiwanese Supreme Court said the online gambling systems used were not “open” or “public” under present legislation.
Therefore, the tribunal said it is in the hands of lawmakers to create adjustments to the wording of these legislation if they do not want other such requests to succeed.
Operators have no comparable loophole to prevent prosecution and penalties. Online gambling operators still need to address Article 286 of the Criminal Code, which states that any party found guilty of “furnishing a place to gamble or assembling persons to gamble” with the goal of generating a profit could face a prison sentence of up to three years.
Currently, Taiwan’s only type of legal gambling is state-run lottery. This has a sports lottery choice and normal draw matches. Despite officials ‘ attempts, many Taiwan citizens use online gambling sites abroad to play in distinct respects.
Only a week earlier, Taiwan’s Criminal Investigation Bureau effectively broke up an important online gambling network. Taichung City has operated this network for the previous four years.
The procedure focused on providing several facilities to internet gambling providers. These facilities include website design, payment processing, customer support and marketing.
It was a network of China-focused portals for gambling, with authorities estimating the annual turnover of all these websites at $700 m.
This operation led to arresting 67 local Taiwanese and 7 Chinese nationals. According to the investigating team, there was a local daily activities manager, but the money came from Chinese sources. Police have confiscated a total of 215 mobile devices and 122 pcs as proof.