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Casinos insure themselves against kidnappings

07 September 2015

In Macau operator use more drastic measures to force defaulters to pay their debts. Due to Chinas move against corruption, more and more gamblers have problems with paying off their gambling debts, therefore the number of abductions continues to grow. The South Chinese Morning Post reported that the resort hotels and casinos in Macau have an insurance policy to protect themselves from the consequences of kidnapping of wealthy or famous guests. Many of the Macau High Roller use the services of so-called “travel agencies” that usually work on the edges of the law. In addition to transport and accommodation and most of the times a credit is mediated to gamble as well.

By limiting the payments to the mainland, the ”travel agencies” now try to recover the money on the spot. A leading insurance broker in Hong Kong, Mr Coles, has confirmed that all major hotels and casino groups had expressed interest in the corresponding risk insurance in Macau in order to alleviate the consequences of such events. He also confirms the risk of being kidnapped, has lately risen sharply. The rapidly slowing economy on the mainland and the falling casino revenue in Macau have led to an increase in bad debts, which have often ended in controversy. “Surely there is a correlation between the development in the mainland of China, in Macau and the kidnappings,” Coles said. The policies are designed to protect casinos and hotels of the legal liability that might arise in a lawsuit by the victim or the family members. Most kidnappers want the payment of debts but do not provide huge ransom and usually keep victims within hotel rooms. The hotels, however, are responsible for the safety of their guests and balance it on a thin line between security and convenience. Quite different is the situation in neighbouring Hong Kong. Here a wave of kidnappings and the huge ransom demanded is equivalent to the city with Venezuela.

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