Online Gambling and Organised Violence: The Federal Court Perspective in Lei Meng’s Case
Apart from the Common Gaming House Act (Act 289) and Betting Act (Act 495), gambling is regulated under the Prevention of Crimes Ordinance 1959 (POCA). It is not uncommon for the authorities to charge anyone who is engaged in illegal online gambling activities under the POCA. In the case of Lei Meng v. Inspektor Wayandiana Abdullah & Ors and Other Appeals, the appellants were detained under the POCA in relation to ‘the organisation and implementation of online gambling’. This paper aimed to provide meaningful scrutiny on the distinction between online gambling and organised violence as stipulated under the POCA. Then, it unfolded the fact that the term “gambling” stated under Section 4 of the CGHA did not include illegal online gambling. This was because the act was enacted before the presence of technology and amendments relating to online gambling have yet to be made. Therefore, this article explored the Federal Court perspective on online gambling and organised violence as it was decided that they were two separate and disparate matters. The research method employed was doctrinal with a literature review and case study analysis. This research established that a loophole existed in the law as neither POCA nor CGHA can be used to charge anyone who had engaged in online gambling in Malaysia. It was observed that in Malaysian context, research on the subject matter was rather limited. As such, this paper hoped to shed light on online gambling and organised violence in Malaysia. It was also to serve as a preliminary study for further research on the subject in future.
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