According to reports of the Philippines’ Daily Tribune, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) is allegedly involved in a new scandal. The Philippine House of Representatives is looking into alleged fraud in some of the government agency’s casinos, a serious crime according to Philippine gambling laws given PAGCOR’s special status.
PAGCOR a corporation formed, owned and controlled by the government, its task is the regulation of land and online casinos in Philippines. As required by Philippine gambling law, PAGCOR has to transfer at least half its annual gross revenue to the government. That’s why any fraud concerning PAGCOR is a serious offense.
PAGCOR is accused of withholding revenue of up to PHP 200 million from the government. Mr. Amado Bagatsing, a Manila Representative, chairman of the committee on games and amusements is leading the investigation.
According to one charge, a PAGCOR employee is alleged to have smuggled out PHP 10.17 million worth of casino chips. The chips were supposed to be PAGCOR’s revenue from one of its casinos in Manila. Another similar charge involves a casino in Cebu City where Similar PHP 2.8 million was also allegedly stolen.
There were rumors and growing concerns of fraud and cheating concerning PAGCOR casinos. The suspicion can have a serious effect on all the positive press the government agency has created with record-breaking revenue this year.
“These disturbing incidents in the casinos were all banner stories in print media and television networks, creating furor among those in the gaming industry and adversely affecting the modern integrated approach of hotel and casino as an entertainment sector in the tourism industry,” Bagatsing said to the Daily Tribune.
PAGCOR has recently launched its biggest project, Entertainment City, which is supposed to be the Manila version of the Las Vegas Strip. Clearly, the corporation can’t allow itself to appear in such a bad light in the Philippines gambling news.