Jack Lam's Fort Ilo­can­dia casino op­er­a­tion shuts down

Sun.Star Pampanga - - PERSPECTIVE! -

The FIR is an af­fil­i­ate of Fon­tana Leisure Park in Clark Field, Pam­panga, owned by Ma­cau-based gam­ing ty­coon Jack Lam.

Upon in­struc­tion of the Pres­i­dent, joint au­thor­i­ties of the Philippine Amuse­ment and Gam­ing Cor­po­ra­tion (PAGCOR) in co­op­er­a­tion with the Re­gional In­ves­ti­ga­tion and De­tec­tion Group and the Ilo­cos Norte Po­lice Pro­vin­cial Of­fice led by Po­lice Se­nior Su­per­in­ten­dent Jo se Me­len­cio Nar­tatez served the clo­sure or­der on late Mon­day af­ter­noon.

Fol­low­ing the ar­rest of 1,316 Chi­nese at Lam’s casino in Fon­tana for over­stay­ing and some vi­o­la­tions, the Pres­i­dent or­dered the ar­rest of the big time gam­ing ty­coon for al­legedly at­tempt­ing to bribe govern­ment of­fi­cials, in­clud­ing Jus­tice Sec. Vi­tal­iano Aguirre and Pagcor chair An­drea Domingo, and for eco­nomic sab­o­tage.

Records from the Bureau of Im­mi­gra­tion how­ever showed that a cer­tain Lam Yin Lok, Lam’s known Chi­nese name, left the coun­try last Nov. 29 for Hong Ko n g.

In view of this, sev­eral em­ploy­ees af­fected by the tem­po­rary clo­sure of the casino pend­ing an in­ves­ti­ga­tion were trans­ferred to other branches of Pagcor.

Jayson Per­rera, le­gal coun­sel of FIR, main­tained that Lam has not vi­o­lated any law, hence he is op­ti­mistic the op­er­a­tion of the Fort Ilo­can­dia casino will re­sume as soon as pos­si­ble.

Ear­lier this year, au­thor­i­ties con­ducted a raid in­side FIRC which re­sulted to the ar­rest of some Chi­nese who were ac­cused of on­line bet­ting but their cases were dis­missed due to lack of ev­i­dence, Per­rera con­firmed.

Over the years, pack of Chi­nese tourists visit Laoag City via char­tered flights and they are all bil­leted at the Fort Ilo­can­dia.

“Our Chi­nese vis­i­tors (at the FIRC) are well-doc­u­mented Chi­nese. They come and go at the Fort Ilo­can­dia,” said Per­rera. (PNA)

(AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

Philippine Vice Pres­i­dent Leni Ro­bredo an­swers ques­tions from the me­dia dur­ing a news con­fer­ence fol­low­ing her res­ig­na­tion from her cabi­net post un­der Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte Mon­day, Dec. 5, 2016 in sub­ur­ban Que­zon City, south of Manila, Philip­pines....

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