More evidence against financiers of fake Small Town Lottery (STL) operations under the name of Vikings Peryahan ng Bayan are being gathered by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in preparation for the filing of charges.
NBI Bacolod chief Atty. Renoir Baldovino said today that they already have clues of the identities of the financiers.
Baldovino confirmed that the illegal operations of Vikings Peryahan ng Bayan under the guise of STL operations are in Bacolod City, Binalbagan and Sipalay City as indicated by positive results of test bet operations on Aug. 6
He clarified that the Super Lucky Beagler Incorporation is the only outfit authorized by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) to operate STL in Negros Occidental.
When they conducted their actual operations on targeted betting stations in Binalbagan and Sipalay on Aug.10, Baldovino, said it was already closed, noting that it was still open a day before.
He raised the possibility that it was temporarily closed, and may resume operations anytime. There were speculations that the operation was compromised, which is still being looked into by the NBI.
Baldovino said they already issued subpoenas to owners of the lot and building where betting stations of Vikings Peryahan ng Bayan have been established, to explain why they allowed the operations of illegal STL.
Last week, a betting station of Vikings Peryahan ng Bayan was also raided by NBI operatives at the Libertad Public Market in Bacolod City that led to the arrest of two persons who immediately managed to post bail of P162,000, and were subsequently released from NBI custodial facility on Aug. 6.
Under the provisions of RA 9287, or “An Act Increasing the Penalties for Illegal Numbers Games, Amending Certain Provisions of Presidential Decree No. 1602, and for other purposes,” Baldovino said anyone involved in the operations of illegal STL, and even arrested bettors, who will be convicted for such offense, will be imprisoned from 30 to 90 days.
For the staff, owner of the lot or building, they may face six to eight years of imprisonment, eight to 10 years to bet solicitor, 10 to 12 years to coordinator and supervisor, 12 to 14 years to its maintainer, manager and operator, 14 years to 16 years to financier, 16 to 20 years to protectors, as well perpetual disqualification of holding public office, especially those connected in the government, he added.
The three illegal betting stations of Vikings/Peryahan ng Bayan reportedly started their operations early this month.
“We are also validating information that they are operating in other areas of Negros Occidental,” Baldovino also told newsmen.*