Miriam Aziz in better days, when she still shared a throne along with her now-ex spouse, the 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 although she denied having once lost as much as £3 million ($4,957,781) in just one night of wagering that she had indeed sold some of her gems to pay the IOUs.
Based on Aziz, it was only £500,000 ($826,296), which most likely for an ex-Sultaness is merely chump change. But wait, because the plot thickens in this tale of broken hearts, broken allegiances and broken bank accounts.
Former Bonded Birdies Sing
Aziz additionally gave testimony against her feminine badminton-coach-turned-bodyguard that is former Lim, who stands accused of herself stealing £12m ($19,831,126) worth of diamonds from Aziz, substituting phony and essentially valueless copies within 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 ended up being later instructed by Aziz to sell the jewels on Aziz’ behalf whenever casinos that are several threatened to sue the ex-queen.
Aziz denied this in court, saying, ‘No, I never asked anyone, especially Fatimah Lim, to offer the diamonds, it myself. because we would do’
Lots of Dough to Spread Around
To put this in context, the Sultan is considered the wealthiest guy in the world; so that the ex-Missus’ visits to casinos in popular spots like London, Singapore and Macau could hardly have raised an eyebrow. At first, anyway. With a £2.5m ($4,131,484) credit limit at upscale clubs like London’s Clermont in Berkeley Square, Aziz could obviously play limits that are high make extravagant wagers without anybody feeling alarmed.
Moreover, it seems the supposedly devout Muslim Aziz a Royal Brunei Airlines journey attendant before becoming the Sultan’s wife prodded Lim to gamble herself, saying she’d give both Lim and several other female bodyguards bankroll that is gambling the tune of £1,500 ($2,479) a pop. Their London casino sojourns would sometimes cover as many as three casinos nightly.
‘There had been individuals in your wider circle not as enthusiastic about gambling that it was not in accordance with the activities of a Muslim,’ said Lim’s defense attorney Rupert Pardoe as you there was a perception. ‘You have hatched a plot to blame Fatimah Lim for the theft of these rings and this diamond bracelet.’
Lim stands accused of three counts of theft in the trial that is still-ongoing.
Aziz’ ex-husband Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah divorced Aziz after a marriage that is 21-year four kids, in 2003. It’s hard to keep track of his various and sundry matrimonies and his progeny, but it appears like the rating is: one royal consort that is long-term 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 reportedly was Aziz.
Pennsylvania Lawmaker Proposes Jail Time and Fines for On The Web Gambling
One Pennsylvania lawmaker wants to make online gambling an offense punishable with jail some time fines (Image: AmericanMafia.com)
Pennsylvania might be one of the biggest states population-wise that is seriously considering on line gambling, but that doesn’t mean everybody there clearly was on board quite yet. And even though the Keystone State studies the matter and watches how things work with neighboring nj, one lawmaker not only opposes putting online gambling into practice there, but actually wishes to jail anybody who attempts to place a bet on the Internet.
Threatening Society, Scavello Says
That’s the plan from State Representative Mario Scavello, who thinks that online gambling is really a threat to families and kids. He’s also concerned that problem gamblers could access sites and have nobody and no mechanism to stop them from throwing away everything they will have right from the convenience of these own living rooms.
‘Here again, online gambling is best called the Wild West,’ said Scavello. ‘Online, there is no one around to keep an optical eye on some one who doesn’t understand when to stop.’
But while opposition to on the web gambling isn’t precisely news that is breaking the specifics of Scavello’s proposal have certainly drawn attention.
The bill he has put forward would actively punish online gamblers with fines and potentially time that is even jail. That would offer Pennsylvania some of the nation’s harshest punishments for on the web gambling, rivaling Washington State for that title.
Under Scavello’s bill, a primary violation could be a summary offense and would carry a fine players nightclub surfers paradise of up to $300 or more to 90 days in jail. Things get much even worse on a second offense: at that time, the criminal activity turns into a misdemeanor, the maximum fine rises to $2,500 and offenders could be jailed for up to a year.
‘I think that if you hit individuals in their wallets, we may start to split straight down in the lawbreakers,’ Scavello stated.
Adelson Backs Bill
Not surprisingly, Scavello’s bill was straight away supported by Sheldon Adelson’s Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling (CSIG). That group pointed to A quinnipiac that is recent poll unearthed that 62 percent of registered voters in Pennsylvania opposed the regulation and legalization of on line gambling in their state.
‘We call on the Pennsylvania Legislature to vote in favor of this bill and send a powerful message that online gaming has no place in American society,’ CSIG said in a statement.
Along with concerns on the ease of access to on the web gambling web sites, Scavello also argued that Web gaming could siphon money away from Pennsylvania’s effective land-based casinos, potentially costing the state revenue and jobs. He also claimed that online gambling could be employed for criminal purposes, such as money laundering.
The proposition comes at a time when Pennsylvania is ways that are actively seeking expand the state’s gaming industry to compete with neighboring states. They’ve already approved bars that are allowing other venues to host gambling devices, and Governor Tom Corbett has stated that the state lottery should additionally offer keno games to Pennsylvania residents. Online gambling has perhaps not yet been put into the continuing state budget, but lawmakers were learning it for future consideration.
Scavello’s bill has found some supporters within the state legislature, particularly among fellow Republicans.
‘We understand that online gambling causes a whole lot of exploitation by various dubious characters that are out there,’ said State Representative David Millard. ‘Being addicted to gaming is such as for instance a cancer in our community.’
British 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 present studies have made it appear that the industry is both up and down at the time that is same. The truth is, it’s just a matter of what you need to consider it, as the globe of gambling is changing, and gaming that is mobile becoming exponentially bigger 12 months after year.
Slight Drop in Gambling Numbers Overall
First, there’s a new report out through the British Gambling Commission that displays fewer residents gambled in 2013 than in 2012. It’s only a small drop, however: 55 percent of UK residents said before they were surveyed in 2013, compared to 57 percent the year before that they gambled over the four weeks.
That report also offered a view who is gambling and how frequently they’re doing it. A total of 60 per cent of male respondents reported gambling at least once a thirty days, while that number was just 50 percent for females. Many 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 overall involvement had fallen. Some 15 percent said they had participated in online gambling over the very last a month, up from 14 percent a year before.
A large percentage of that on line gambling is done through the united kingdom’s National Lottery, which is also the most popular form of gambling in the world overall. In-person gambling was still the most form that is popular of though, with nearly three-quarters of the who said they gambled saying that had only done so offline.
Mobile phone Gaming Continues to Grow
What do those numbers really mean? They show that online gambling continues to still grow, but features a great deal more space for expansion. And something thing that wasn’t covered in the Gambling Commission report was mobile gaming, which has grown extremely in just the last year.
That growth that is expansive illustrated in a report by OddsWinner.com, which studied the online and mobile revenues associated with top British bookmakers. Searching 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 right here currently.
For instance, William Hill has seen growth that is fast how much of their activities guide income is now coming from mobile players. In 2012, just 26 percent of their sports book turnover came from mobile betting. But by the second quarter of 2013, that number had already raised to 33 %, and the business expects that to go above 40 % by the finish of 2014. Incredibly, William Hill reported that year-over-year profits for mobile gaming had increased 298 % from 2012 to 2013.
Other companies saw lower but nonetheless dramatic rates of mobile growth. 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 50 % of their customers now come from mobile phones.
According to the OddsWinner report, the development in mobile betting is due to numerous facets, like the usage that is increased of in the UK. More companies may also be releasing apps, versus forcing customers to connect through their mobile browsers by itself.
‘Smartphones can now deliver the ongoing solutions required to permit customers to bet regarding the move,’ said Push Technology CEO Sean Bowen. ‘they are carried by us every-where and therefore can bet at anytime, anywhere. There are many more people with mobiles than PCs.’
Other factors range from the rise in interest for in-play betting on activities, and mobile-specific marketing campaigns by the major UK bookmakers.