MANILA -- The Senate Committee on Games and Amusement will conduct a probe in its next hearing if small town lottery (STL) games, established as a legal alternative to "jueteng" and intended to curb it, are probably being used as a front for the illegal numbers racket.
"Iyan ang pagtuunan namin ng pansin sa susunod na pagdinig para ma-establish talaga na ginagamit na front o dummy ng mga gambling lord (That's what we will prioritize during the next hearing to establish if STLs are being used as fronts by gambling lords), Senator Panfilo Lacson, chair of the committee, said in a radio interview.
Lacson said the next hearing on controversies hounding the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) will take place sometime after January 31 when Camarines Sur Rep. Luis Ray Villafuerte is done discussing the situation in his province.
It may be recalled that Villafuerte, during the last Senate hearing, claimed that the PCSO failed to act on a complaint against illegal gaming firm Evenchance in Camarines Sur despite the weight of evidence present.
Lacson said that since the last hearing, several mayors have texted him and shared their own experiences similar to that of Villafuerte's.
He said some members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) told him that they were being blamed for the proliferation of "jueteng" and allowing PCSO employees to participate in the games.
The senator earlier claimed that the government is losing an estimated PHP4 billion a month to gambling lords operating STL games.
Source: Philippine News Agency