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Alvin Chau, one of Macau’s high-profile gambling promoters, has been sentenced to 18 years in prison for racketeering and illegal gambling activities.

Chau was the former chairman of Suncity Group, a Macau-based company that helped promote gambling by lending credit to high rollers. Macau is the only region in China where gambling in casinos is legal.

Chau was ordered by the court to pay the Macau government more than HK$6.5 billion ($830 million) as well as $22.7 million to $98 million to a number of casino operators.

Chau was first arrested in China’s eastern province of Zhejiang on November 2020.

After his arrest, experts said that the move signalled a tougher stance on gambling in Macau by the Beijing authorities.

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