According to online gambling news in Russia, there is still plenty of corruption among politicians and oficials. This week, Russian ex-prosecutor, who was apparently disguised as a defense attourney, was arrested on an international warrant in Poland. A court in south Polish city of Nowy Sacz detained Mr. Ignatenko for his involvement with an illegal gambling gang outside Moscow.
The organization was involved in operating a ring of casinos, illegal under Russian gambling laws, in multiple towns near the Russian capital. The operations netted nearly US $10 million per month. To save face, Moscow is requesting extradition and Polish authorities will have to decide Mr. Ignatenko’s fate. It is also claimed that the Interior Ministry is involved in the scandal. Thus, will a crook prosecute a crook?
Special Gambling Zones
While traditional illegal and online casinos in Russia are growing like mushrooms after rain, the so-called official ”gambling zones” in isolated Russian outback aren’t prospering. A legal casino operator, Sasha M., disclosed that state officials demanded ”krisha” or what is known as ”protection” payments that were way too high for the poor region.
As a spokesperson for The Gaming Business Association, Mr. Ilyushin, stated, ”There’s no single member in our association who would want to invest in those zones.”
It seems that the Russian government can’t stop shooting itself in the leg over and over again. While the Russian Federation invested nearly US $50 million in these special economic zones, it received back only US $3 million in taxes. Once again, the Moscow tsars weren’t able to put a leash on the necks of corrupt local officials.
The potential among millions of Russian poker, blackjack, and roulette players remains untapped.