Miriam Aziz in better days, when she still shared a throne with her husband that is now-ex Sultan of Brunei (Image: AFP/Getty)
The 59-year-old ex-wife of the Sultan of Brunei has fessed up in court to some major gambling arrears played out in London’s toniest casinos, and the subsequent sale of £1million ($1,652,593) worth of fine jewelry to pay off some of her accrued gambling debts in a tale worthy of any great novelist’s plotlines, Miriam Aziz.
The hijab-covered woman testified in Isleworth Crown Court last week that she had certainly sold some of her gems to pay the IOUs, although she denied having once lost as much as £3 million ($4,957,781) in just one evening of wagering.
According to Aziz, it absolutely was just £500,000 ($826,296), which probably for an ex-Sultaness is merely chump modification. But wait, because the plot thickens in this tale of broken hearts, broken allegiances and broken bank accounts.
Former Bonded Birdies Sing
Aziz also gave testimony against her female previous badminton-coach-turned-bodyguard Fatimah Lim, who stands accused of herself stealing £12m ($19,831,126) worth of diamonds from Aziz, substituting phony and basically valueless copies in their stead.
The 35-year-old Lim says that during a 20-month spree, Aziz took her sizable retinue of support staff with her to gambling venues around the globe. Lim stated she had been later instructed by Aziz to sell the jewels on Aziz’ behalf whenever several casinos reportedly players club surfers paradise threatened to sue the ex-queen.
Aziz denied this in court, saying, ‘No, I never ever asked anyone, especially Fatimah Lim, to sell the diamonds, because I would do it myself.’
Plenty of Dough to Spread Around
To put this in context, the Sultan is definitely the wealthiest man in the world; so the ex-Missus’ visits to casinos in popular spots like London, Singapore and Macau could hardly have raised an eyebrow. At first, anyway. Having a £2.5m ($4,131,484) credit limit at upscale groups like London’s Clermont in Berkeley Square, Aziz could obviously play limits that are high make extravagant wagers without anybody feeling alarmed.
More over, it appears the supposedly devout Muslim Aziz a Royal Brunei Airlines flight attendant before becoming the Sultan’s wife prodded Lim to gamble herself, saying she’d give both Lim and several other female bodyguards gambling bankroll to the tune of £1,500 ($2,479) a pop. Their London casino sojourns would sometimes protect as numerous as three casinos nightly.
‘There had been people in your wider group not as enthusiastic about gambling as you there was a notion that it was not prior to the activities of a Muslim,’ stated Lim’s protection attorney Rupert Pardoe. ‘You have hatched a plot to blame Fatimah Lim for the theft of these bands and this diamond bracelet.’
Lim stands accused of three counts of theft in the still-ongoing trial.
Aziz’ ex-husband Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah divorced Aziz after a marriage that is 21-year four young ones, in 2003. It’s hard to keep track of their various and sundry matrimonies and his progeny, but it appears like the rating is: one royal long-term consort; the stripped-of-all-titles and today ex, Aziz; and a former Malaysian television hostess who only made it 5 years with her royal ex, and who was also stripped of all of the titles and her allowance, as apparently was Aziz.
Pennsylvania Lawmaker Proposes Jail Time and Fines for Online Gambling
One Pennsylvania lawmaker desires to make online gambling an offense punishable with jail some time fines (Image: AmericanMafia.com)
Pennsylvania might be among the biggest states population-wise that is seriously considering on line gambling, but that does not mean everyone else there was on board quite yet. And even though the Keystone State studies the problem and watches how things work in neighboring nj-new jersey, one lawmaker not merely opposes putting online gambling into practice there, but really desires to jail anyone who attempts to place a bet on the Internet.
Threatening Society, Scavello Says
That’s the plan from State Representative Mario Scavello, who believes that online gambling is a threat to families and kiddies. He’s also concerned that problem gamblers could access internet sites and have nobody and no mechanism to stop them from wasting everything they will have right from the comfort of these own living spaces.
‘Here again, online gambling is best called the Wild West,’ said Scavello. ‘on the web, there’s no one around to keep an optical attention on someone who doesn’t know when to stop.’
But while opposition to on the web gambling isn’t precisely breaking news, the specifics of Scavello’s proposition have absolutely drawn attention.
The bill he has placed forward would actively punish online gamblers with fines and potentially even jail time. That would offer Pennsylvania some of the nation’s harshest punishments for on line gambling, rivaling Washington State for that title.
Under Scavello’s bill, an initial violation is a summary offense and would carry a fine of up to $300 or over to 3 months in jail. Things get much worse on a second offense: at the period, the crime becomes a misdemeanor, the maximum fine rises to $2,500 and offenders could be jailed for up to a 12 months.
‘I believe that if you hit individuals within their wallets, we can start to break straight down in the lawbreakers,’ Scavello stated.
Adelson Backs Bill
Not surprisingly, Scavello’s bill was instantly supported by Sheldon Adelson’s Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling (CSIG). That team pointed to a present quinnipiac poll that discovered that 62 percent of registered voters in Pennsylvania opposed the regulation and legalization of online gambling in their state.
‘We call in the Pennsylvania Legislature to vote in favor of this bill and send a message that is powerful online gaming has no place in American society,’ CSIG said in a declaration.
Along with concerns throughout the ease of access to on the web gambling internet sites, Scavello additionally argued that Web gaming could siphon money away from Pennsylvania’s successful land-based casinos, potentially costing the state income and jobs. He also claimed that online gambling could be useful for criminal purposes, such as money laundering.
The proposal comes at the same time when Pennsylvania is ways that are actively seeking expand the state’s gaming industry to compete with neighboring states. They will have already authorized bars that are allowing other venues to host gambling devices, and Governor Tom Corbett has said that the state lottery should additionally offer keno games to Pennsylvania residents. Online gambling has perhaps not yet been put to the continuing state budget, but lawmakers are learning it for future consideration.
Scavello’s bill has found some supporters into the continuing state legislature, particularly among fellow Republicans.
‘We realize that online gambling contributes to a great deal of exploitation by various dubious characters that are out there,’ said State Representative David Millard. ‘Being addicted to gaming is like a cancer in our community.’
UK Mobile App Gambling Growth Going Strong
Mobile gambling particularly sports wagering has been growing exponentially in the UK, while traditional Internet play has dropped (Image: Courier-Mail)
What goes up, must come down. However in the case of the united kingdom gambling market, two recent studies are making it seem that the industry is both down and up at the time that is same. The truth is, it’s simply a matter of what you would like to have a look at it, as the globe of gambling is changing, and mobile gaming is becoming exponentially bigger year after year.
Slight Drop in Gambling Numbers Overall
First, there’s a new report out from the UK Gambling Commission that presents fewer residents gambled in 2013 than in 2012. It’s just a small drop, however: 55 percent of UK residents said they gambled over the four days before they were surveyed in 2013, compared to 57 percent the year before.
That report also gave a look at whom is gambling and how often they’re doing it. A total of 60 per cent of male respondents reported gambling at least once a while that number was just 50 percent for women month. Most gamblers said they only played as soon as a or less week.
The commission additionally looked at online gambling, and saw that participation in Internet betting had been up even as general participation had dropped. Some 15 per cent said they had participated in online gambling over the very last one month, up from 14 per cent a before year.
A large percentage of that on line gambling is done through great britain’s National Lottery, which is also the most popular form of gambling in the country overall. In-person gambling was still the many form that is popular of though, with nearly three-quarters of the who stated they gambled saying that had only done so offline.
Mobile phone Gaming Is Growing
What do those figures really mean? They show that online gambling continues to grow, but still has a great deal more room for expansion. And something thing that wasn’t covered in the Gambling Commission report had been mobile video gaming, that has grown extremely in simply the year that is last.
That expansive growth ended up being illustrated in a report by OddsWinner.com, which studied the online and mobile revenues associated with top British bookmakers. Looking at just the largest companies, it becomes clear that mobile video gaming is the long run for online operators and that the near future may, in fact, be here already.
For instance, William Hill has seen fast growth in how much of their sports guide revenue is now coming from mobile players. In 2012, just 26 percent of their sports book return came from mobile betting. But by the quarter that is second of, that number had already raised to 33 percent, and the organization expects that to go above 40 percent by the conclusion of 2014. Incredibly, William Hill reported that year-over-year revenues for mobile gaming had increased 298 percent from 2012 to 2013.
Other businesses saw lower yet still dramatic prices of mobile development. Paddy Power saw a 112 percent enhance in mobile revenue in 2013, while Betfair said activity that is mobile up 64 percent year-over-year. And sports guide Bet365 says that half of their customers now come from cellular devices.
In line with the OddsWinner report, the growth in mobile betting is a result of many facets, including the usage that is increased of in the UK. More companies are also releasing apps, as opposed to forcing customers to connect through their mobile browsers by itself.
‘Smartphones are now able to deliver the ongoing solutions needed allowing clients to bet in the move,’ said Push Technology CEO Sean Bowen. ‘We carry them everywhere and therefore can bet at anytime, anywhere. There are many more people with mobiles than PCs.’
Other factors range from the increase in interest for in-play gambling on activities, and mobile-specific marketing campaigns by the major UK bookmakers.