A court in Singapore sentenced three Chinese nationals to prison for applying superglue to the palms of their hands in order to steal chips from Singapore casinos.
Huang Chunsheng, 50, Zheng Jiansheng, 64, and Jiang Renjing, 55, each pled guilty to one count of stealing conspiracy, and Zheng also pleaded guilty to two other counts of cheating while gaming under the country's Casino Control Act.
According to the court, the trio travelled from China to Singapore on March 6 on social visit visas that permitted them to stay for two weeks. They had no return tickets, and Huang had devised a scheme to take chips from other customers if they ran out of money. Before leaving China, he bought two vials of powerful glue and disguised them as eyedrops.
Huang's accomplice, Zheng, had an eye problem that required regular drops, which gave the perfect cover narrative if the small vials of glue were questioned by airport security.
Huang revealed the strategy to his friends in their hotel room on the second day of the vacation after they lost on the first day at the Marina Bay Sands. It required squeezing a little amount of glue onto the palm of the hand, which was then quickly passed over a casino chip, causing the chip to stick to the adhesive. The chip could then be sneakily removed from the table.
According to investigators, his accomplices practised the technique with bottle caps and casino chips.
The strategy worked well for the gang over the next five days, as they managed to accumulate S$1,575 (US$1,180) in casino chips. They would split off once they arrived at the Sands, targeting people with enormous amounts of chips who might not notice the odd one missing.
Huang was apprehended on March 11 when a suspicious gambler grabbed his hand and turned it over to expose a stolen chip.
Huang escaped from the casino. When they realised the game was over at the Sands, they went to Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore's only other casino, which was only a short drive away. As they entered the building, they were apprehended.
Prosecutors stated that the crimes were planned and featured a high level of sophistication. In their defence, the trio claimed they were uneducated individuals who had never travelled outside of China and had never been in problems with the authorities.
Huang, the admitted plot's mastermind, received an eight-month prison sentence, while Jiang received a seven-month sentence. Zheng, who is legally blind in one eye and self-administered eyedrops during the hearing, stole the most. He was sentenced to ten months in prison.
By fLEXI tEAM