Chinese Couple Among 64 Arrested in Euro 2024 Betting Ring Crackdown

The Chinese couple denied involvement in the online gambling operation, claiming their wealth came from selling an advertising company in China.

NONTHABURI — Despite ongoing efforts by Thai government officials to campaign against Euro 2024 football gambling, dozens of betting websites continue to operate defiantly, with billions of baht in circulation.

On June 21, Police Lieutenant General Worawat Watnakornbancha, Chief of the Technology Crime Suppression Division, and a cyber police team announced the results of Operation SHUTDOWN EURO BET that targeted two major Euro football betting websites: wm88 and x-stand.

The raid led to the arrest of a Chinese group and their network, with seized assets totaling over 280 million baht. Investigations revealed that the two websites had a cash flow of approximately 1.4 billion baht from January to June 2024.

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Officers seized luxury vehicles of a Chinese couple in the Thonglor area, Bangkok on June 21, 2024.

Acting on court-issued search and arrest warrants, the police apprehended 64 suspects, categorized by their roles in the operation, such as money transfer accounts, money holding accounts, and cryptocurrency trading accounts.


The first raid took place at a house in the Thonglor area, where a Chinese couple was arrested: Mr. Xiang Zhang, 42, and Mrs. Zhang Huiqing, 37. Officers seized cash amounting to 13,830,000 baht and 3,200 US dollars, along with luxury vehicles including a Bentley valued at 20,000,000 baht, a Mercedes-Benz worth 3 million baht, and a GWM Tank 500 valued at approximately 2 million baht.

Additionally, they found a house purchase contract worth 88,000,000 baht, land titles for 11 luxury condominium units, and numerous designer bags. The total value of seized assets at this location was 22,580,000 baht.

The Chinese couple denied involvement in the online gambling operation, claiming their wealth came from selling an advertising company in China and that they mainly used the money for living in Thailand and trading cryptocurrencies.

The second raid occurred at a luxury condo in the Phrom Phong area, resulting in the arrest of one Chinese national, Mr. Jun Xia, 36, and four Thai nationals. Assets seized at this location totaled 287,396,713 baht.

The suspects were charged with jointly conducting illegal electronic gambling and money laundering. They, along with the seized assets, were handed over to investigators for legal proceedings. Efforts continue to apprehend remaining suspects still at large.

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Police officers show the seized assets totaling over 280 million baht in the news conference at the Technology Crime Suppression Division headquarters in Muang Thong Thani on June 21, 2024.

Meanwhile, Police Lieutenant General Akradech Pimolsri, Assistant Commissioner-General of the Royal Thai Police, announced the operational results of the Center for Prevention and Suppression of Illegal Euro 2024 Football Gambling from June 14-20, as follows:

  1. On-site gambling arrests: A total of 1,578 suspects were arrested, divided into 65 bookmakers, 1,503 players, and 10 runners.
  2. Online gambling arrests: 62 websites were shut down, with a total of 248 suspects arrested, including 28 gambling organizers and 220 players. The total money circulation in these 62 websites amounted to 1,400,150,007 baht.

A significant case was the arrest made by the Technology Crime Investigation Bureau, which managed to shut down 4 websites with a money circulation of over 1.4 billion baht.

Pol. Lt. Gen. Akradech further stated that various types of gambling are illegal and all cases will be prosecuted without exception. Players, promoters, and organizers of football gambling are liable under the Gambling Act  1935,  which carries a penalty of imprisonment not exceeding 2 years or a fine not exceeding 2,000 baht, or both.

If the offense involves inducing, promoting, or allowing children to engage in inappropriate behavior or behavior likely to lead to criminal acts, guardians or offenders may also be prosecuted under the Child Protection Act 2003, which carries a penalty of imprisonment not exceeding 3 months or a fine not exceeding 30,000 baht, or both.