November 24, 2023 2 min read

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Myanmar Rebels Storm Laukkaing Casinos, Free Trafficked Workers

The rebels have handed several mafia members to the Chinese authorities

Myanmar rebels continue their march against the Asian country’s dictatorial leadership. Amid their struggle, the freedom fighters have stormed casinos and scam facilities, freeing trafficked workers and taking mafia members hostage.

According to the latest reports the rebels, representing three ethnic minorities and anti-junta fighters, took over Laukkaing, a key town near the border with China. As they occupied the lawless Shan State town, the rebels cracked down on the local casino and scam call factories.

Myanmar’s casinos are more or less run by influential Chinese mafia members. Several mafia families have exerted immense control over the Shan State for a while and have deep ties with the country’s military leadership.

The rebels have handed some of the captives to the Chinese authorities for them to deal with. This notably included Ming Guoping and Ming Zhenzhen, two members of a notorious mafia family and relatives of the late Ming Xuechang. The rebels have said that the latter has killed himself while in custody, although many have taken this statement with a grain of salt.

According to reports Ming Xuechang had full control over the local police. This allowed him to run large-scale human trafficking operations without intervention. During an escape attempt a month ago, Ming’s guards opened fire, killing several women. Following that China, which previously used to be a supporter of Myanmar’s military junta, issued arrest warrants for Ming family members.

In the meantime, the freedom fighters have also freed a large number of trafficked humans working at the Shan State’s scam facilities.

Laukkaing’s Leader Is Held Captive by the Army

Laukkaing used to be under the control of a rebel commander called Peng Jiasheng until 2009. Peng was exiled by his former ally, Bai Suocheng, who assumed control of the region and gave his loyalty to the Myanmar junta.

The military leadership, in turn, allowed Bai to run casino operations for affluent foreign customers, primarily from China. However, Bai eventually expanded his “business” to also include money laundering, human trafficking and scam call centers.

Bai was eventually arrested by the Myanmar Army, in spite of his previous relationship with the military rule. According to reports, he had been captured earlier this month while attempting to flee the region.

Journalist

Although Fiona doesn't have a long-spanning background within the gambling industry, she is an incredibly skilled journalist who has built a strong interest in the constantly growing iGaming network. The team at GamblingNews.com is glad to have her on our roster to help deliver the best stories as soon as they hit. Aside from writing, she loves to dabble in online casino games such as slots and roulette, both for her own enjoyment and also as research to better improve her understanding of the industry.

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