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Triads 'Infiltrate' Soho Casino

11 April 2005

LONDON, UK -- As reported by The Observer: "One of London's most popular casinos is under investigation following allegations that Chinese gangsters are using the venue to launder vast sums of illicit cash from extortion, vice and people smuggling operations.

"News of the Gaming Board investigation into Napoleons Casino comes just days after the Government's controversial Gambling Bill received royal assent.

"The bill, which deregulates the industry and allows for the creating of 'super-casinos', had been strongly opposed because of fears that it will encourage punters to fall into debt and make casinos vulnerable to infiltration by organised crime.

"The Gaming Board is looking into activities at Napoleons Casino, in Leicester Square, which draws a significant proportion of its members from the Chinese and south-east Asian community living in nearby Chinatown.

"Casino staff have told The Observer that several suspected money lenders operate in the casino and that they are believed to have links with Triads, the ancient Chinese underworld societies that make millions of pounds from a range of criminal activities in Chinatown.

"The lenders are said to carry large quantities of cash to pass on to gamblers who have lost all their money, enabling them to carry on betting anyway.

"...Casinos are required to bar anyone suspected of making such loans, but current and former employees of Napoleons claim this practice is rife..."

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