Philippine gaming regulator PAGCOR has cancelled the Philippine Offshore Gaming Operator (POGO) license of CGC Technologies, an offshore gaming service provider based in Pampanga, as well as the offshore gaming accreditation of the whole of the Sun Valley Clark hub.
PAGCOR’s Chairman, Alejandro H. Tengco, notes that the hub, located in Clark Freeport Zone, is “no longer suitable to maintain its provisional accreditation, nor be issued a full accreditation as an offshore gaming hub due to its failure to ensure a lawful and orderly conduct of offshore gaming by its occupants in its registered sites.”
The cancellation comes after a May 4th raid on Sun Valley after allegations of criminal activity including crypto scams and human trafficking.
The CGC was operating six buildings within the hub, of which only two were accredited by PAGCOR.
The Philippine Senate heard today that the Clark Development Corporation, which operates the government-owned buildings where the illegal activities were taking place, said that CGC Tech was able to get away with the crypto scam because of a “failure of intelligence” by the development group’s management.
Over 1,000 human trafficking victims were rescued from the property in the early-May raids, with 12 alleged perpetrators arrested, prompting further calls by Philippine senators to eliminate POGOs entirely.
Repatriation of the victims has already begun, with 60 rescued Vietnamese returning home on Tuesday. Some 437 Vietnamese in total had been tricked into working in the scam.
Speaking of foreign nationals who have been tricked in the employment schemes, PAGCOR’s Chairman notes that job seekers should “check the credibility of the companies that they are applying in. By going the extra mile, they can protect themselves from possible scams and human trafficking activities.”
The cancellation of the CGC and Sun Valley Clark Hub accreditation “serves as a warning to all our offshore gaming licensees and accredited service providers that PAGCOR is serious in its mission to uphold responsible and regulated gaming in the country. While we see the potential of offshore gaming in terms of our revenue-generation efforts, we do not condone their involvement in any criminal activity that violates the rights – not only of Filipinos but of other nationalities as well,” notes PAGCOR’s Chairman.