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Report Illegal Gambling To Crime Stop

Report Illegal Gambling To Crime Stop
Manager for Crime Stop Jamaica, Prudence Gentles (left) speaking at a JIS Think Tank held recently. At right is Director of Licensing and Registration and Acting Director of Enforcement, at the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission (BGLC), Maurice Thompson.
(Media Credit: Mark Bell)

KINGSTON (JIS) -- Manager for Crime Stop Jamaica Prudence Gentles, is re-assuring persons that their calls to report illegal gambling among other crimes, are anonymous. “We do not know who they are. Crime Stop has never been compromised,” she says. The Manager was speaking at a recently held JIS Think Tank on the joint anti-illegal gambling campaign with the Betting Gaming and Lotteries Commission (BGLC) and Crime Stop which is now fully underway. Ms. Gentles explains that whenever information is received, each person is given an individual number that they can call back to find out what has happened to the information that they gave. “We do not want to know who they are, because we do not want the probability that somebody is going to be found out, as this would bring our programme down,” she says.

She explains that they want to maintain Crime Stop’s success, so they guard the anonymity and confidentiality with everything they have.

Ms. Gentles further notes that “Crime Stop is unable to call back persons, as these numbers are blocked from them, which means it is untraceable.”

The Crime Stop manager says that if there is success, then arrangements are made to pay the reward in cash.

“We can drop it at the front desk at some office with some bogus name on it, or we can put it into a bank account, with no identity of the person,” Ms Gentles states.

Since the inception of Crime Stop there has been $24 Million in pay-out.

Ms. Gentles notes that some persons report information, without requesting a reward, highlighting that they do it not for the money, but because they want to get rid of an illegal situation out of their neighbourhood.

Persons with information regarding illegal gambling are urged to make a report to Crime Stop using the toll free number 311.

The Crime Stop Manager says that persons should be reminded that the organisation is a non-government organisation, and it is also a separate entity from the Police.

She notes that they have in recent times, held persons with illegal Cash pot papers, and adds that illegal gambling is the new method that gangs are using to fund their activities.

Meanwhile, Director of Licensing and Registration and Acting Director of Enforcement at the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission, Maurice Thompson explains that the practice of illegal gambling can contribute to loss of life.

He highlighted that someone involved in illegal betting committed suicide, after finding herself in a position where she was unable to pay-out winnings to her customers.

The BGLC has partnered with Crime Stop to allow members of the public to make anonymous reports through Crime Stop’s toll free number; and will offer persons a cash reward of up to $25,000 if the information provided results in an arrest and charge.

Persons may call Crime Stop to report illegal gambling at any time, as Crime Stop accepts information 24 hours a day, including public holidays.