Gambling is a multi-billion dollar industry and that is just the legal side of the business no matter if it is poker, land based or online casinos. On the flip side of the coin the European country of Greece estimate that illegal gambling in their country is worth in the region of €5 billion a year ($7 billion), and it is something that they want to crackdown on with immediate effect.
In a meeting held yesterday, Tuesday 1sy July, the General Secretary for Transparency in Greece Giorgos Sourlas stated he wants a complete and comprehensive crackdown on all illegal gambling dens and operations in the European country. Mr Sourlas said, “These operations are harming the national economy and acting as a mechanism for laundering ill-gotten gains”.
The Hellenic Gaming Commission regulates legal gaming and legal gambling and they have informed Mr Sourlas that they will work with him to clear up the industry in Greece as Mr Sourlas said, “This makes us optimistic that an end will be put to organized crime rings operating without restraint.”
It is estimated that there are in the region of 60,000-100,000 illegal gaming machines located in gambling dens that are dotted around the country, operations that turnover in the region of 4-5billion Euros a year, with profits of around 1.5billion Euros. Mr Giannakopoulos, the Commission Chief, revealed the figures to the Kathimerini Newspaper and he also said, “This doesn't include online gambling, which had a turnover of about 1bn Euros.”
Do you think these illegal gambling dens should be closed down, or are they a good thing for the people of Greece, especially since the extreme austerity measures that have been brought in over the last couple of years, measures that have seen wages in the country cut by a huge 40% with taxes being increased.