Monday, April 19, 2010

Singapore's First Convicted Casino Cheat Gets Prison Time

Hou Yongwei, a 26 year-old Chinese national, has carved out a piece of history for himself in the world of legalized Singaporean gambling. Only problem is that he's gotta serve 10 months in a Singapore prison for his glory. Yongwei became the first person convicted for casino cheating at Resorts World Sentosa casino. I don't know what it's like inside Singapore's prisons, and I don't wanna find out, but I imagine it's nothing like those sweet prisons in Sweden!

Yongwei got caught pastposting (placing a bet after the outcome was known) S$600 on a 10 to 1 bet on a Tai Sai Chinese dice game that would have paid him S$6,000 had he gotten away with it. But after the dealer lifted the cover of the dice tumbler and revealed the winner to be triple-fours, Yongwei's pastpost was not clean enough and the dealer got suspicious. Surveillance was called in and they had the move on tape.

While sentencing Yongwei, who could have gotten five years behind bars according to Singapore criminal laws, District Judge Ronald Gwee let it be known that all casino cheats would face stiff sentences in his courtroom.

My take: I was never too thrilled about working Asian casinos, but the 10 months in prison is a lot better than what could have been meted out in Macau a few years back--I'm talking about convicted casino cheats getting their hands chopped off!