Posted by: rbbadger | August 3, 2008

Gambling in South Korea

Currently, Korean citizens may only gamble in one casino, one which is located in a very rural area of Gangwon Province in an abandoned mining district.  Under Article 246 of the Korean penal code, gambling is punishable by a fine of 5,000,000 won ($5,000 US).  Under Article 247 of the penal code, illegally operating a gambling establishment for profit is punishable by a fine of 20,000,000 won ($20,000) and imprisonment for three years.  The casinos in Seoul, Incheon, and Busan cater only to foreigners and proof of foreign citizenship is required before entry.  The casinos operate under the oversight of the Ministry for Culture, Sport and Tourism of the Republic of Korea.

Apart from the casino in Gangwon-do, Koreans may gamble by playing the National Lottery or by betting on the horses.  Online gaming has become a problem and the government is currently considering legislation to limit it.  Those who gamble illegally on-line could face fines of 20,000,000 won ($20,000 US) and two years imprisonment. 

Korea is not the only country to bar its citizens from gambling.  The Principality of Monaco, which draws in quite a bit of money from the famed Casino de Monte-Carlo, bars its own citizens from gambling there.

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