SINGAPORE — Actor Terence Cao is reportedly under investigation after he appeared in three video commercials for an illegal gambling website.
According to Chinese daily Lianhe Zaobao, the 55-year-old Cao was allegedly seen by its reader acting out various roles in the three videos, all of which promotedi the joy of "gambling in small amounts".
One of the clips, which was 1 minute 40 seconds long, reportedly showed Cao acting out two characters, one of whom had gambled and lost $500. The other character tried to console him, before pulling out a mobile phone saying that he won $50.
The video ended with the logo of the gambling site clearly visible, strongly hinting that the second character had won his $50 from the site.
The videos have since been removed from the gambling website. Lianhe Zaobao said that police have confirmed that it has received a report regarding this issue, and that the case is under investigation.
Cao 'unaware of context of the videos'
When contacted by Lianhe Zaobao, Cao - who runs live streaming sales company Sibay Shiok - said he was approached by a production company whom he had never worked with.
He added that he was unaware of the context of the videos, and that he was not clear about the website as well. He later urged the Lianhe Zaobao reporter to rewatch the videos, saying that they were meant to deter people away from gambling.
When the reporter tried to text him with follow-up questions, Cao stopped replying. Calls from local media outlet 8world also went unanswered.
Lawyers whom Lianhe Zaobao spoke to confirmed that the gambling website is illegal, and it is also illegal for individuals to assist in the advertisement or promotion of such sites.
Singapore’s Gambling Control Act expressly prohibits all unlicensed gambling. The only licensed company that offers gambling and betting services in Singapore is Singapore Pools, and the Gambling Regulatory Authority can shut down illegal gambling websites.
According to the lawyers spoken to by Lianhe Zaobao, Cao's actions can be considered a breach of the Gambling Control Act, and such offences carry a maximum fine of $20,000.
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