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Macau Casino Loses $200K as Scammers Alter Gaming Chips' Denominations

An unnamed casino in Macau has suffered a substantial loss of approximately $200,000 after scammers successfully tampered with gaming chips to modify their denominations. Macau's Judiciary Police revealed that the scheme involved altering regular house HKD100 (US$13) chips to make them appear as if they had a face value of HKD10,000 ($1,300) each. Investigators seized a total of 33 manipulated chips and arrested five suspects, all of whom were mainland Chinese.

Macau Casino Loses $200K as Scammers Alter Gaming Chips' Denominations

The scammers exploited the similarity in color between the HKD100 and HKD10,000 chips, although the precise nature of the modifications was not detailed by PJ spokesperson Lei Hon Nei. The chips were embedded with RFID (radio-frequency identification) tags, making them more challenging to counterfeit. These tags emit signals that can be detected by RFID-reading equipment at gaming tables and the casino cage.

Several of the altered chips were used by four suspects at baccarat tables before being cashed out around 10:30 p.m. The scheme unraveled when an attentive dealer handling a stack of HKD10,000 chips noticed some irregularities. Another suspect was apprehended when attempting to exchange three manipulated chips for cash at the casino cage.

Cyprus Gaming License

The incident reflects a trend of fraudulent casino chips, which has been on the rise in recent years, facilitated by the ease of purchasing realistic fakes online, often through the dark web. In August of the previous year, Macau authorities arrested two Chinese nationals suspected of flooding the Galaxy Macau with counterfeit chips. The scammers circulated at least 493 fake chips, each with a value of HK$10,000, during a two-hour gambling spree, costing the casino an estimated HK$5.6 million (US$700,000).

This incident follows a broader pattern of scams targeting Macau's casino sector, emphasizing the need for enhanced security measures and vigilance within the industry.



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