The Shanghai Daily is reporting that a very large criminal case involving Internet gambling is underway.

TWENTY suspects in what is believed to be the country's biggest online gambling case went on trial today in Kunming, Yunnan Province, reported today.

Prosecutors at Kunming Intermediate People's Court told judges that the case involved about 8.68 billion yuan (US$1.24 billion) in wagered money and more than 200 million yuan in illegal profits, the report said.

One of the gambling Website's allegedly operated by the defendants attracted 5,198 registered users from August 2006 to March 2007, prosecutors said.

The court also said it's the country's biggest online gambling case because of the number of suspected gamblers and the wide area it affected.

Prosecutors accused the suspects of opening gambling houses and severely interfering with social order.

Two Hong Kong brothers who were identified as Tan Zhiwei and Tan Zhiman allegedly set up a gambling house in Myanmar in 1999 and then started to develop an online betting network. Prosecutors said they established several gambling Websites and placed the computer servers in Guangzhou and Dongguan in Guangdong Province. More than 3,000 people used to work for the gambling network, the report said.
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