Mon, 15 Aug 1994

Police arrest 22 in raid on gambling related activities

JAKARTA (JP): Police arrested 22 people in two separate gambling raids over the weekend.

Lt. Col. Latief Rabar, a spokesman for the City Police, said Saturday that officers arrested three men for gambling-related fraud at the Sano hotel in Pluit district, North Jakarta, at 11:30 p.m. on Friday and 19 gamblers in the Taman Dutamas housing complex, Jaya Kusuma subdistrict, West Jakarta on Thursday.

The three fraud suspects reportedly cheated Imam Muhayat, 46, a businessman from Sido Mulyo subdistrict, South Lampung regency, out of Rp 50 million (US$23,288) in what is known as the judi potong babi (pig to slaughter) scam.

The scam involves players betting on a number of matches or buttons. During the game, two or more of the of gamblers collude to cheat an inexperienced player, who is considered "a pig to be slaughtered".

Latief said Muhayat was approached by a group of five persons some time in July in Bandar Lampung. The five were identified as Lie Kun Tet, alias Mr. Wong, alias Akun, 56, who claimed to be a Singaporean; Ahmad Rusli, alias Awy, 41, a resident of Kota Bambu subdistrict, West Jakarta; Rusli, alias Ahong, 42, a resident of Jelambar subdistrict, West Jakarta; Apin, alias Mr. Fu, 40, also said to be a Singaporean, and Santo, 35.

The five told Imam they were interested in cooperating with him in the coconut fiber business.

After several days of negotiating, Imam felt that the five were serious. He came to Jakarta on Thursday to finalize the deal. He brought Rp 50 million in cash with him.

In a room at the Sano hotel, the five persuaded him to play a game in which they bet on a number of buttons.

Being convinced that he would win the game, Imam, who had already come to trust the five, took up the offer.

During the gambling, the five reportedly cheated him by secretly stealing one of the buttons from the table during play. Imam lost a total of US$137,000.

The five then took his Rp 50 million cash and told Imam he could pay them the rest on the following day.

Feeling cheated, Imam reported to the police, who arrested three of the five, Mr. Wong, Awy and Ahong, when they came to the hotel to collect the rest of their money from Imam on Friday.

The 19 gamblers were captured while playing the Sam Pak Kong game at a house in the Dutamas housing complex, West Jakarta, at 4 p.m. on Thursday.

Police said the 19 people included 15 gamblers, the croupier, named Tamin, 50, his three employees, Budi, 49, Darto, 35, and Eddi, 49. Police also picked up eight people who were watching the play to act as witnesses.

Police seized a set of rummy cards, two walkie talkies and Rp 8.3 million and Malaysian $350 in cash as evidence.(jsk)