Police investigating COVID-19 patients who turned MAEPS quarantine center into mini casino (Video)

Patients playing cards and placing money for bets. Photos: MT Ang/Facebook
Patients playing cards and placing money for bets. Photos: MT Ang/Facebook

With nothing much to do at a coronavirus quarantine center, some have decided to turn the place into a mini-Vegas. 

The police are looking into a series of videos circulating online that showed COVID-19 patients purportedly gambling while isolating at the Malaysia Agro Exposition Park Serdang, or MAEPS. At least four videos had shown men gathering at a bunk bed and playing what appears to be the Chinese game Big Two, or Dai Di with money. 

“If there are elements of gambling or related crimes, police will take action,” Selangor police spokesperson Fadzil Ahmat told the press yesterday. No official complaints were filed to police, he said. 

The videos were posted to Facebook Tuesday by a man named MT Ang, who appeared to be giving a tour of the facility. MAEPS is a quarantine center for low-risk COVID-19 patients. 

“We can play cho dai di (Chinese card game) here, this looks fun,” he could be heard saying in Cantonese. Pieces of notes worth RM1 and RM5 could be seen near the cards. 

Nearly all forms of gambling are illegal in Malaysia. Only one casino is allowed to legally operate in the country, which is the Casino De Genting at Genting Highlands.

Offenders could be fined up to RM5,000 (US$1,200) or jailed for six months.

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