Mainland Chinese love to play games that involve betting and a great many of them love to gamble in their free time. The Chinese economy has gone from strength to strength during the past decade which resulted in disposable income for millions of Chinese.
Ironically gambling is forbidden in Mainland China and the only casinos that have permits to operate are located in Macau, the biggest gambling hub in the world. Chinese nationals from the Mainland used to flock to Macau on a daily basis to visit these casinos and indulge in their favourite pastime of gambling. Ever since Beijing decided to crackdown on Macau’s casinos, authorities have been keeping a careful watch on all Chinese nationals who play Macau’s casinos and as a result many Chinese nationals have stopped coming to Macau and are looking for new places to gamble.
The twenty three year old internet celebrity Guo Meimei allegedly decided to take advantage of this market opportunity and launched an underground casino during 2014 in Mainland China. The casino operated illegally and had a very selective clientele in order to stay under the radar of the Chinese authorities. In August 2014, authorities received information about Guo Meimei’s underground casino and they raided the illegal operation and arrested Guo Meimei.
On the 21st of May 2015, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate (SPP) released a statement on its microblog on weibo.com stating that Guo Meimei will have to go to court and face trial as the prosecution had filed a case in the Dongcheng District of Beijing.
Chinese Internet celebrity Guo Meimei was prosecuted on Thursday for allegedly running casino, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate (SPP) said on its official microblog account on weibo.com. The lawsuit states that Guo and her partner Zhao Xiaolai had a well organized system in place that encouraged illegal gambling and were both repeat offenders who needed to be prosecuted.
Guo is not a stranger to controversy having gained popularity back in 2010 after she revealed on social media that she was a manager of a charity organization called the Red Cross Society of China (RCSC). She used her social media accounts to publicize her wealth and a lavish lifestyle creating a lot of media attention as to how the manager of a charity could afford such an extravagant lifestyle.
The authorities and the media immediately turned their attention to the RCSC and the scandal that Guo had started. The authorities had concerns on the funding of RCSC and suspected the organization of being involved in embezzlement and a lack of regulations on the management of charity funding.
The Chinese law states that those who are found to be participating in any form of illegal gambling operations could face up to three years in prison. If they are convicted of a very serious offense, then their jail time could be up to ten years. The court is expected to make a decision in the coming weeks and Guo will most likely end up going to prison.