Police authorities have indicated that gaming-related loan sharking cases increased by 15.2 percent in 19H1, local media reports.
Some 968 cases were reported in the first half of the year, with most of the suspects and victims involved bring mainland Chinese.
However, rather than believing there is a rise in crime, police authorities consider the increase to be due mainly to more investigation work to prevent gaming-related crimes, with 1,636 police inspections conducted in the first seven months of the year, leading to several criminal organizations being taken down.
Around 1,177 people were also officially charged with gaming-related crimes by the Public Prosecutions Office (MP), 16 percent more than the prior-year period.
Secretary for Security Wong Sio Chak stated that the reinforced inter-regional cooperation with mainland China and Hong Kong to fight cross-border gaming-related crimes.
He also noted that the installation of several “Eye in the Sky” public CCTV surveillance cameras were crucial in uncovering several crimes.
Despite the increase, authorities believe that the growth rate of crimes was lower compared to 2018.