Miriam Aziz in better days, when she still shared a throne along with her now-ex husband, 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 a week ago 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.
In accordance with Aziz, it was just £500,000 ($826,296), which probably 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 also gave testimony against her female former badminton-coach-turned-bodyguard Fatimah Lim, who appears accused of herself stealing £12m ($19,831,126) worth of diamonds from Aziz, substituting phony and really valueless copies inside their stead.
The 35-year-old Lim says that during a spree that is 20-month Aziz took her sizable retinue of support staff with her to gambling venues around the globe. Lim said 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 sell the diamonds, it myself. because we would do’
Plenty of Dough to Spread Around
To put this in context, the Sultan is definitely the man that is wealthiest 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. 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 bets without anyone feeling alarmed.
More over, it appears the supposedly devout Muslim Aziz a Royal Brunei Airlines journey attendant before becoming the Sultan’s wife prodded Lim to gamble herself, saying she would give both Lim and several other feminine bodyguards bankroll that is gambling the tune of £1,500 ($2,479) a pop. Their London casino sojourns would sometimes cover as much as three casinos nightly.
‘There were individuals in your wider group 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’ve got hatched a plot to blame Fatimah Lim for the theft of these bands and also 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 children, in 2003. It’s difficult to keep track of their various and sundry matrimonies and his progeny, but it appears like the rating is: one royal long-lasting consort; the stripped-of-all-titles and now ex, Aziz; and a former Malaysian television hostess who only made it 5 years with her royal ex, and who was also stripped of most titles and her allowance, as apparently was Aziz.
Pennsylvania Lawmaker Proposes Jail Time and Fines for On Line Gambling
One Pennsylvania lawmaker desires to make online gambling an offense punishable with jail some time fines (Image: AmericanMafia.com)
Pennsylvania might be one of many largest states population-wise that is seriously considering on line gambling, but that does not mean everybody else there is certainly on board quite yet. And even though the Keystone State studies the problem and watches how things work in neighboring New Jersey, one lawmaker not only opposes putting online gambling into practice there, but actually wishes to jail anybody who tries 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 just a threat to families and kids. He’s also concerned that problem gamblers could access internet sites and have nobody and no mechanism to stop them from throwing out everything they have right from the comfort of the own living rooms.
‘Here again, online gambling is best described as the Wild West,’ said Scavello. ‘Online, there’s no one around to keep attention on some one would youn’t know when to stop.’
But while opposition to online gambling isn’t precisely breaking news, the specifics of Scavello’s proposal have surely drawn attention.
The bill he has put 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 could be a summary offense and would carry a fine of up to $300 and up to 3 months in jail. Things get much even worse on a offense that is second at that point, the criminal activity turns into 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 in their wallets, we can start to crack down on the lawbreakers,’ Scavello said.
Adelson Backs Bill
Not surprisingly, Scavello’s bill was immediately 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 the web gambling in their state.
‘We call on the Pennsylvania Legislature to vote in support of this bill and send a message that is powerful online gaming has no place in American culture,’ CSIG stated in a statement.
Along with concerns throughout the ease of access to on the web gambling internet sites, Scavello also argued that Internet gaming could siphon money far from Pennsylvania’s successful casinos that are land-based potentially costing the state revenue and jobs. He also claimed that online gambling could be used for criminal purposes, particularly money laundering.
The proposition comes at any given time when Pennsylvania is actively seeking ways to expand the state’s gaming industry to compete with neighboring states. They’ve already authorized allowing bars and other venues to host gambling machines, and Governor Tom Corbett has said that the state lottery should additionally offer keno games to Pennsylvania residents. Online gambling has not yet been put in to the continuing state budget, but lawmakers happen studying it for future consideration.
Scavello’s bill has found some supporters in the state legislature, particularly among fellow Republicans.
‘We know that online gambling results in a whole lot of exploitation by various dubious characters that are out there,’ said State Representative David Millard. ‘Being addicted to gaming is just like a cancer in our community.’
UK Mobile App Gambling Growth Going Strong
Mobile gambling particularly sports betting has been growing exponentially in the UK, while traditional Internet play has fallen (Image: Courier-Mail)
What goes up, must come down. But in the case of the UK gambling market, two current studies are making it appear that the industry is both down and up at the same time. In reality, it’s just a matter of what you need to consider it players paradise casino slots, as the globe of gambling is changing, and gaming that is mobile becoming exponentially larger year after year.
Slight Drop in Gambling Numbers Overall
First, there’s a report that is new from the British Gambling Commission that presents fewer residents gambled in 2013 than in 2012. It is merely a small drop, however: 55 percent of UK residents said that they gambled over the four months before they certainly were surveyed in 2013, compared to 57 per cent the year before.
That report also provided a consider who is gambling and how often they’re doing it. A complete of 60 % of male respondents reported gambling at least once a month, while that number was just 50 percent for females. Many gamblers said they only played when a or less week.
The commission additionally looked at online gambling, and saw that participation in Web betting was up also as overall participation had dropped. Some 15 % said they had participated in online gambling over the last four weeks, 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 typically the most popular form of gambling in the country 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.
Cellphone Gaming Continues to Grow
What do those true figures actually mean? They show that online gambling continues to grow, but still has a great deal more room for expansion. And one thing that wasn’t covered in the Gambling Commission report was mobile gaming, which includes grown enormously in just the last year.
That expansive growth ended up being illustrated in a report by OddsWinner.com, which studied the internet and mobile revenues of this top British bookmakers. Searching at just the largest companies, it becomes clear that mobile gaming is the future for online operators and that the long term may, in reality, be here currently.
For instance, William Hill has seen fast growth in how much of their recreations guide revenue is now coming from mobile players. In 2012, just 26 percent of their sports book return came from mobile wagering. 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 % by the conclusion of 2014. Incredibly, William Hill reported that year-over-year revenues for mobile gaming had increased 298 % from 2012 to 2013.
Other programs saw lower but nonetheless dramatic prices of mobile development. Paddy Power saw a 112 percent enhance in mobile revenue in 2013, while Betfair said mobile activity had been up 64 percent year-over-year. And sports guide Bet365 says that 1 / 2 of their customers now come from cellular devices.
Based on the OddsWinner report, the growth in mobile betting is because of many factors, including the increased usage of smartphones in the UK. More companies will also be releasing apps, in the place of forcing customers to connect through their mobile browsers per se.
‘Smartphones are now able to deliver the ongoing solutions needed to allow clients to bet regarding the move,’ said Push Technology CEO Sean Bowen. ‘We carry them 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 wagering on recreations, and mobile-specific marketing campaigns by the major UK bookmakers.