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Internet Gambling Ring Played Shell Game to Hide Servers

Online gambling operators illegally taking Israeli customers pretended to be regulated in Belize when they actually had no connection to the country.

An illegal gambling ring busted by Israeli police claimed to be based in Belize, but servers were located in Estonia, and bank accounts for the leaders were in Israel. The casino and sports betting site called claimed to be regulated by the Belize Gaming Commission, but no connection existed.

Israeli police arrested two brothers, Idan and Shai Raviv, for operating the illegal gambling network. The outfit stretched operations from Eastern Europe to England and Israel, with Belize apparently only used as a front.

The website, which no longer is available, had claimed also to be owned by Net Games, a firm supposedly incorporated in Belize. But Lincoln Blake, an official from the Belize Ministry of Economic Development, told Channel 5 News in Belize that no filings or registration of the gambling site nor its holding company existed.

" The Government of Belize recently discovered that several online gaming websites are claiming to have licenses in Belize," stated Blake in a phone interview with the television station. "We want to advise the Internet community and the general public that there are only two with license to operate from Belize."

Blake specified those would be Fulton Data Processing and Sports Offshore Limited. He asked that Internet users avoid doing business with all other operators claiming Belize connections for their online casinos.

While Israel permits citizens to operate online gambling sites, residents are not allowed to play, nor are such sites allowed to recruit Israeli players. The busted gaming ring had targeted Israelis as players.

Published on December 24, 2009 by PrestonLewis

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