Zheng Bin was wanted for offences relate to illegal internet betting in China. The man is known to have had ties with an underground sportsbook operating during the 2010 football World Cup, taking bets on the game in spite of the fact that most forms of sports betting in the country are illegal.
Chinese police were having a hard time tracking down Zheng Bin, but a few days ago the man basically fell into their laps. During a routine traffic check in which police were looking for drunk drivers, Zheng Bin was pulled aside when an officer noticed that he had been drinking.
At this point the officer used his internet-connected PDA to call up Zheng Bin’s police record. When he saw an outstanding arrest warrant for the man, the officer immediately took Zheng Bin into custody. His vehicle has been impounded, and he is now being held for questioning.
Zheng Bin was not a gambler, he was a bookmaker. This crucial difference means a lot when it comes to Chinese gambling laws. Officials crack down hard on anyone who takes bets illegally, but like in many countries, nobody pays much attention to the punters.
One of the big reasons for this is that unlicensed bookmakers, including both street betting shops and online sportsbooks in China, often have associations with match fixing and other sports corruption. China’s national football league is now one of the most corrupt pro sports leagues in the world, and officials are working hard to clean up the sport’s tarnished image.
By elimination (or at least reducing) the number of illegal bookmakers in the country, perhaps they can get a handle on the rampant sports corruption issue.