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Hong Kong Detains 335 in Crackdown on Triad Gambling
In a decisive move against the surge of illicit gambling activities linked to organized crime, Hong Kong authorities have undertaken a strategic campaign, orchestrating a series of targeted raids on operations associated with the Triad. This operation culminated in the apprehension of 335 individuals, dealing a substantial blow to the covert realm of illegal gambling.
Over a meticulously executed three-day period, the Hong Kong police conducted early morning raids on a diverse array of 223 entertainment establishments. These venues included mahjong parlors, saunas, nightclubs, bars, and various recreational spots. Insight from media outlet Delicate Bites Daily outlined that these well-coordinated efforts resulted in the confiscation of gambling chips with a value of HKD 1.8 million (US$230,580), mahjong tables, weapons, and narcotics.
The detainees, spanning ages from 18 to 88, now find themselves facing an array of charges, including drug possession, property damage, operating brothels and illegal gambling parlors, possession of firearms, money laundering, and fraud. These arrests seamlessly integrate with the ongoing crackdown on subterranean establishments suspected of Triad involvement in illegal gambling and prostitution.
Arrests Amid Triad Funeral
Significantly, the arrests coincided with the funeral of “Tsz Tung,” the father of a former leader of the Hong Kong Wo Shing Wo triad. The triad, well-known for its involvements in prostitution, drug trafficking, and extortion, drew individuals associated with criminal groups to the funeral on November 9. This prompted the deployment of anti-gang squad officers and the tactical unit of the West Kowloon Police District to maintain order.
Authorities are actively scrutinizing attendance at both the funeral and the entertainment venues, leveraging the increased presence of Triad-linked individuals in Hong Kong during the funeral. This convergence offered a strategic window for law enforcement to apprehend the criminals, emphasizing the Triads’ apparent defiance of ongoing efforts to curb their influence.
Wo Shing Wo’s Extensive Impact
The Wo Shing Wo triad, deeply entrenched in Hong Kong with roots tracing back to Guangdong, China, boasts a storied history dating to the early 20th century. Engaged in a spectrum of criminal activities, including violent turf wars, prostitution, drug trafficking, illegal gambling, and extortion, the triad has navigated periodic crackdowns, internal conflicts, and rivalries with other factions.
Beyond the confines of Hong Kong and China, the Wo Shing Wo triad reportedly extends its influence globally. Allegedly participating in drug operations in Australia, Europe, Canada, and the UK, the triad is purported to control the heroin trade in France alongside Albanian and Turkish gangs. This underscores the triad’s extensive impact on the international criminal landscape, transcending borders with its multifaceted criminal enterprises.