Indonesian Muslims Gamble at Underground Mafia Casinos

Posted: March 2, 2012

Updated: October 4, 2017

Underground casinos are the way of life in Indonesia for those seeking gambling entertainment.

A huge nation can certainly be a great gambling market. Not so in Indonesia, at least not under Indonesian gambling laws. This nation of 240 million, and growing fast, is not allowing gambling as nearly 90% of the population is Muslim and, as Islam prescribes, games of chance are not allowed.

Yet, as Indonesian gambling news portray, a large percentage of country’s population just loves to gamble. Since, casinos and other betting establishments can’t operate in the open, these are run at underground facilities.

As typical with illegal gambling, most of these casino outfits are controlled by criminal gangs. Since the police needs to show some work in order to save the law enforcement face and get a paycheck, busting illegal betting operations is, if not a daily norm, quite regular. Nowadays, with police’s nose digging everywhere, running a profitable underground casino business becomes challenging.

Since mafia is an innovative organization, always adopting to changing circumstances, as its prolonged existence proves, the Indonesian mobsters are coming up with ingenious ways to beat the police at a hide-and-seek, cat-and-mouse game.

As recent local events show, once the law enforcement gets a tip and rushes to close the illegal outfits, the mobsters are using the latest technological marvels to be one step ahead.

Casino mafia uses foot soldiers not only to kill the competitors, but to watch out for the cops. If the soldiers sense an impending police action, they alert the casinos with remote control devices. Instantly, the casino IT professionals switch off the computers, even burn them.

In addition, anti-forensic software is frequently used to erase the digital footprints as much as possible. The truth is, the advanced gangs have better weapons and technology than many local Indonesian watchdogs.

Nevertheless, police is definitely able to catch the weaker elements as recent arrests prove. In 2011, nearly 25,000 people were arrested in relation to illegal gambling activities. This is a 25% increase on a previous year.

What is not clear is how the investigators are fighting illegal mobile casinos in Indonesia since these are beyond the technical grasp of local cops, or even religious police, who never put a finger on a computer.

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