E-sabong operators, 37 others released from jail

THE National Bureau of Investigation (NBI)-Central Visayas has released the 39 individuals nabbed for allegedly operating e-sabong in Minglanilla town, southern Cebu, last week.

NBI Regional Director Rennan Oliva told SunStar Cebu on Monday, September 26, 2022, that the suspects were able to post bail.

He said following the Minglanilla raid, they have not recorded any other e-sabong operations in the region.

The NBI-Central Visayas conducted the raid at the Amenic N’ Calajoan Cockpit around 6 p.m. of September 16 after a search warrant was issued by Judge Grace Veloso-Fernandez of Regional Trial Court Branch 19 in Cebu City.

Arrested during the operation were Carlos Uy Gothong III, also known as Jun Gothong, and Sergio Santos Lu, alias Dong Dong Ong, allegedly the owners of Amenic N’ Calajoan Cockpit. Also nabbed were their 37 workers.

They were charged with alleged violation of Republic Act 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012, and Presidential Decree 449, or the Cockfighting Law of 1974.

The 39 individuals were detained at the NBI-Central Visayas office.

Bail for the arrested employees was set at P36,000 each, while the bail for Gothong and Ong was around P100,000 each.

Oliva said the arrested persons paid their bails last September 22, resulting in their arrest.

The Cebu Police Provincial Office (CPPO) said earlier that it has also not monitored any other e-sabong activities in the province, except for the case in Minglanilla.

Police Lieutenant Colonel Mark Gifter Sucalit said they have been intensifying their operations against illegal gambling, such as swertres, e-sabong and games with bets involved like billiards and basketball.

Sucalit said the efforts were made right after former President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the suspension of online cockfighting operations in the country. (HIC)