Hong Kong police arrest 202 in citywide raids targeting illegal gambling operations of triad group, seize nearly HK$2 million in cash, chips

Hong Kong police have arrested more than 200 people in citywide raids targeting the illegal gambling operations of a triad group, seizing nearly HK$2 million in cash and casino chips.

Many of the 202 suspects, aged between 14 and 78 years, had a triad background, police said on Saturday. Officers arrested 148 men and 54 women.

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“Operation Swift Eaves primarily aims to tackle the illegal activity of a triad organisation active in East Kowloon, as well as to cut off its sources of income,” Senior Superintendent Chung Lai-yee said.

“In this operation, we sent several officers to infiltrate several venues that were opened or controlled by the triads to gather evidence.”

Senior Superintendent Chung Lai-yee says the police operation is continuing. Photo: Facebook@Hong Kong Police Force

The force launched the two-day operation on Friday, carrying out raids at about 40 locations including arcades, illegal gambling dens, unlicensed bars and private clubs.

Officers arrested 201 people for offences including trafficking in a dangerous drug, conspiracy to criminal damage and operating illegal gambling establishments.

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They also seized HK$560,000 in cash, HK$1.35 million in chips, 53 machines used for gambling and other evidence.

One alleged triad leader – a man surnamed Lee, 37 – evaded capture during the operation but was later arrested at Lok Ma Chau at about 7.40pm on Saturday.

Chung said Lee was suspected of using a licensed clubhouse as an underground casino, where he also allegedly engaged in money laundering.

Gambling gear was also confiscated. Photo: Facebook/Hong Kong Police Force

According to Chief Inspector Ho Kai-ho of the Kowloon East regional anti-triad unit, the clubhouse was also used by the group as an operations base.

Police said the criminal group hired illegal workers to operate the venue, with the premises also used as a meeting point for triad members in the area.

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It had also launched other illegal gambling outfits, with poker, baccarat and other popular games available to play.

Ho added that the organisation controlled several arcades, effectively transforming them into illegal gambling venues.

Chung said the operation was continuing and she did not rule out further arrests.


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