The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCor) issued a stern warning to its offshore gaming licensees and accredited service providers to abide by the Philippine laws and strictly comply with PAGCor’s rules and regulations.
The Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for PAGCor, Alejandro Tengco, enjoined all licensees and service providers to operate only within the bounds of their licenses or accreditations. They were likewise warned that involvement in any criminal activity shall be dealt with severely, to include the possible suspension and eventual cancellation of their licenses or accreditation.
PAGCor’s warning came alongside the suspension order issued to CGC Technologies (CGC), an accredited offshore gaming customer relations service provider, which was subjected to an inter-agency search operation on May 4, 2023. The operations of CGC, whose accreditation was granted in September 2, 2021, came after the Philippine National Police’s (PNP’s) Anti-Cybercrime Group, the Special Action Forces, the Intelligence Group of the Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Commission and the Inter-Agency Council on Anti-Trafficking conducted a special operation inside the Sun Valley Business Hub in Mabalacat, Pampanga, for alleged credit card fraud, serious illegal detention and human trafficking activities.
CGC was found to be operating six buildings in the site but only two were accredited by PAGCor. Personnel working in the hub are of mixed nationalities including Indonesians, Vietnamese, Nepalese, Bhutanese and Chinese. Raiding authorities were able to confiscate over 1,000 computers and devices from the site, which were subjected to forensic investigation. PAGCor said that once the establishments were proven to be involved in illegal activities, the state-run gaming firm will immediately cancel the company’s accreditation.
Tengco said the crackdown on CGC was a result of the agency’s intensified coordination with the Office of the President (OP), Department of Justice (DOJ), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Philippine National Police (PNP), National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and Bureau of Immigration (BI) to combat illegal activities in offshore gaming operations.
“There is more to come,” Tengco said. “We will continuously subject our offshore gaming licensees and service providers to stricter monitoring.”
Meanwhile, PAGCor also expressed full support to the decision of the DOJ and the BI to order the immediate repatriation of the foreign nationals rescued during the incident. This is a strong showing of PAGCor’s firm stance against offshore gaming licensees and service providers participating in illegal activities.
“PAGCor will continue to work hand in hand with law enforcement agencies to ensure a safe and responsible gaming environment not only for Filipinos but also for other nationalities,” Tengco said. “Only through regulated and responsible gaming can we minimize, if not totally eradicate all crimes that are being linked to gaming activities.”