Junket Leader Levo Chan Arrested on Illegal Gambling Activity Charges

Levo Chan

Levo Chan, the CEO of Tak Chun, has been arrested for running illegal gambling operations in Macau.

The junket saga continues in Macau as yet another major player has been arrested by authorities. Late Friday, Macau Judiciary Police arrested the CEO of Tak Chun, Levo Chan. The casino junket operator leader is the second individual from a major junket firm to be arrested in just three months.

Details of the Arrest

Police did not say it was Levo who was arrested when the report surfaced, but the did announce that it was surname Chan. It was later on, through Macau Legend Development, that the connection was made. Levo Chan is the CEO and largest shareholder of the company.

Over the weekend, Macau Legend Development revealed that the CEO was the individual arrested. The company is in charge of Fisherman’s Wharf and operates junket casinos for VIP gamblers at Babylon and Legend Palace.

According to police, Chan was taken into custody on charges of operating illegal gambling activities. This includes the creation of a criminal syndicate and allowing money laundering. Chan was apprehended for questioning in a local neighborhood and refused to comply, so he was arrested and taken to the Correctional Services Bureau prison location.

A few hours after the arrest took place, Macau Legend Development announced that Chan had resigned. He is no longer the co-chairman of the board or CEO. The goal of the resignation is to avoid a distraction of the company and to cater to the interests of the company shareholders.

The announcement said that Chan was leaving the company and there was no disagreement between him and Macau Legend. He reportedly has no claim against the group, such as compensation, severance payments, or remuneration.

Common Theme Among Junket Operators

For quite some time now, we have known that junket operators are closing up shop in Macau. For many years, junkets brought in high rollers from other areas of the world, including mainland China, to gamble. The providers offer first-class travel arrangements as well as accommodations for the high rollers coming to Macau.

Once in the SAR, the individual is given casino credit to gamble. The clients would use VIP rooms to play games like baccarat and blackjack. The junket industry has been under scrutiny for quite some time and a crackdown started in November 2021 when Alvin Chau was arrested. He was the head of Suncity Group.

Just a few years ago, the majority of revenues coming into Macau came from junket operators. As a crackdown is taking place and services are removed, it is expected that Macau will see a huge drop in revenue earnings.

In 2016, President Xi Jinping decided to take on junkets, adding strict operational oversight. Because of this change, gambling earnings dropped by 38% in just three years, from over $45 billion to $27.9 billion. Now that junkets will be a thing of the past, it is expected that revenues will decrease even further.

Currently, Macau is dealing with issues involving the COVID-19 pandemic, which has led to a decrease in travelers to the SAR. With the loss of junkets, the city may hit rock bottom, earning less than they ever have before.

Until COVID is under control, and officials feel it is safe for travelers to come in from regions like mainland China and Hong Kong without restrictions, the city of Macau will continue to struggle with revenue earnings. It will be interesting to see how the region survives once junkets are fully out of the country and no longer an option.

Associate Writer: Simon loves to bet on sports as well as play online slots, and he has a keen eye for sorting out the honest sites from the not so honest.