20 Aug 2019

The Casino Regulatory Authority (CRA) will be organising the 5th Singapore Symposium on Gambling Regulation and Crime from 29 - 30 August 2019 at the Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel, Singapore. The two-day event brings together Asian regulators and law enforcement agencies to hear from established regulators and experts from around the world. Topics covered during the Symposium include evolving technological developments within the gambling industry, global developments on problem gambling, money laundering and gambling crimes, and emerging issues such as eSports and loot-boxes.

The Guest-of-Honour for the opening ceremony is Mrs. Josephine Teo, Minister for Manpower and 2nd Minister for Home Affairs.

Symposium Programme

29 August 2019, Thursday


Plenary Session 1 - Agile Regulation: Ensuring Effective Regulatory Supervision and Enforcement

This session provides insights into the regulatory and supervisory practices and approaches taken by the casino regulators in Singapore, Macau and New Zealand to ensure effective oversight of their licensees. Topics which are covered include:

- Casino Regulatory Authority of Singapore’s regulatory approach for agile and effective regulation;

- Policies and measures implemented by the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau to encourage gaming operators to develop more non-gaming options, to achieve the objective of positioning Macau as a "World Center of Tourism and Leisure"; and

- New Zealand Gambling Commission’s considerations for the recent casino licence renewal of Christchurch casino.

Plenary Session 2 - Evolving Technological Developments in the Gambling Industry

Participants will learn how the latest technological innovations have impacted the gambling industry, as well as the opportunities and challenges which they present to regulators in Nevada and Queensland. Participants will also hear how the French online gambling regulator, ARJEL has leveraged on technology to detect money-laundering, match fixing and study players’ behaviours.

Plenary Session 3 - Emergent Trends: eSports and Loot-boxes

This session highlights the key developments and international regulatory trends in the emerging areas of eSports, eSports betting and loot boxes. The speakers from Belgium and Nevada will also share on the regulatory approaches which their respective organisations have taken to manage the risks and concerns presented by these increasingly popular products.

30 August 2019, Friday


Plenary Session 4 - Raising Standards to Protect Consumers from Gambling Harms

In this session, participants will learn about emerging Responsible Gambling (RG) initiatives and how paradigm shifts on economic, social and political fronts are driving changes in the RG landscape. Participants will also gain insights on how technology has been leveraged to provide gamblers with real-time information about their gambling behaviour.

Plenary Session 5 - Prevention of Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing & Gambling Crimes

This session highlights Singapore’s approach to combating money laundering and gambling crimes. Speakers will share about their respective regimes and how their organisations are dealing with new and upcoming threats. In particular, participants will hear about Singapore’s experiences in dealing with gambling crimes beyond the casinos.


Speakers at the 5th Singapore Symposium on Gambling Regulation and Crime include:

Plenary Session 1 - Agile Regulation: Ensuring Effective Regulatory Supervision and Enforcement

Teo Chun Ching

Mr Teo Chun Ching

Mr. Teo Chun Ching is presently the Chief Executive of the Casino Regulatory Authority of Singapore (CRA).  He leads CRA in regulating Singapore’s casino industry and ensures the management and operation of the casinos remain free from criminal influence or exploitation, gaming in the casinos is conducted honestly and the potential harm to vulnerable persons is contained and controlled. He is also concurrently the Senior Director of the Gambling Regulatory Unit in MHA, responsible for regulating remote gambling under the Remote Gambling Act. 

Prior to his present appointment, Mr Teo was the Director of Manpower in the Singapore Police Force (SPF), responsible for recruiting, retaining and developing 11,000 police officers and civilian staff, and to provide an appropriate exit system. As SPF’s Director of Planning & Organisation Department in 2012 to 2016, Mr Teo implemented strategic planning, capability building and organisational development in the SPF. 

Mr Teo was Deputy Director of the Criminal Investigation Department (2011-2012) where he led efforts to build up capabilities against cybercrime and organised crime. As Commander of Bedok Police Division (2009-2011), Mr Teo was responsible for policing the eastern region of Singapore which had a residential population of about 1 million. From 2006-2009, Mr Teo was the Commander of Airport Police Division, responsible for Singapore’s aviation security. 

Mr Teo was awarded the SPF Overseas Scholarship in 1993, graduating from Oxford University with a Master of Engineering (First Class Honours) in 1997. He has a Master of Business Administration (Distinction) from INSEAD on an SPF Postgraduate Scholarship in 2006. He is married with 2 children.

Paulo Martins Chan

Mr Paulo Martins Chan

Mr. Paulo Martins Chan was appointed as the Director of the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) in December 2015 due to his extensive legal knowledge and language proficiency in Chinese, Portuguese and English. Under the leadership of Paulo, the DICJ's law enforcement capability and regulatory framework continues to enhance, further expediting the healthy and sustainable development of the gaming industry.

Prior to joining the DICJ, Paulo worked at the Prosecutions Office for over 17 years. Owing to his wide knowledge in law, strong ethics and unquestioned integrity, Paulo was appointed as the Assistant Public Prosecutor-General since 2009. 

Paulo received his Bachelor of Law at the University of Macau and obtained his Master of Law at the Macau University of Science and Technology. His passion in the field of law is shown by his active participation in various law committees and sharing of professional experiences via lecturing to the University of Macau, Public Prosecutions Office, Legal and Judicial Training Centre, Macau Bar Association, Legal Affairs Bureau, Judiciary Police and Public Security Forces Affairs Bureau. Paulo is also the co-author of the book "Studies on Macau Gaming Law" -- the first English book that explains about the various gaming laws and regulations in Macau.

Blair Cairncross

Mr Blair Cairncross

Mr. Blair Cairncross is the Executive Director of the New Zealand Gambling Commission, a role that he has held since December 2007.  Prior to this, he was the Senior Legal Advisor to the Gambling Commission.

Previously Mr. Cairncross was a lawyer in private practice having worked in New Zealand and the United Kingdom in the areas of civil and commercial litigation.

Mr. Cairncross has a BA and LLB from the University of Waikato in New Zealand.

Plenary Session 2 - Evolving Technological Developments in the Gambling Industry

Jim Barbee

Mr Jim Barbee

Mr. Jim Barbee is the Chief of the Nevada Gaming Control Board’s Technology Division.  The Technology Division is responsible for the oversight and regulation of all gaming technology used throughout the State of Nevada.  Jim started his career with the Nevada Gaming Control Board in 2000 after working as a computer engineer in the field of ASIC and VLSI design.

As the Technology Division Chief, Jim provides counsel to the members of the Nevada Gaming Control Board and Nevada Gaming Commission on regulatory and policy matters related to gaming technology.  He has been instrumental in the evolution of Nevada’s regulations and policies in the era of growth in gaming technology, including regulations for internet gaming, skill gaming, and Nevada’s New Innovation Beta process.  The New Innovation Beta process allows innovative gaming technology to be deployed in a limited manner pending the completion of development for regulatory compliance.

Jim collaborates with gaming regulators, manufacturers, and operators worldwide on how to effectively and efficiently regulate gaming technology.  He often consults with emergent gaming jurisdictions on the development of regulations and best practices related to the governance of gaming technology.

Jim earned his Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering degree from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and is currently a member of the UNLV College of Engineering Advisory Board.

Mike Sarquis

Mr Mike Sarquis

Mr. Mike Sarquis is the Executive Director of the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation Queensland. He is, however, currently acting as Deputy Director General of Liquor, Gaming and Fair Trading.

In his normal role he is responsible for managing the gaming and liquor regulatory licensing and compliance regimes and implementing the responsible gambling strategy and harm minimisation programs. He is also responsible for the administration of the Gambling Community Benefit Fund, which distributes approximately $54 million each year to worthwhile community projects and initiatives.

Mike holds a Bachelor of Business in Accountancy and a Graduate Diploma of Business in Professional Accounting. He is also a current member of the Gambling Community Benefit Fund Committee, the Responsible Gambling Advisory Committee, and is a member and former vice president of the International Association of Gaming Regulators.

When he’s not wearing his OLGR cap, you might find him on the golf course, in his boat fishing, at the horse races, or exploring some new idyllic destination.

Thomas Delafosse

Mr Thomas Delafosse

Mr. Thomas Delafosse is an analyst with the French Online Gaming Regulatory Authority (ARJEL).

After graduating from the Ecole Polytechnique and the Ecole des Mines, Thomas Delafosse worked for three years on the regulation of the french telecommunications market. Since 2018, he works for the french regulator for online games, as data analyst, where he is involved in various subjects including operators surveillance and fraud detection. 

Plenary Session 3 - Emergent Trends: eSports and Loot-boxes

Peter Naessens

Mr Peter Naessens

Mr. Peter Naessens is acting General Director of the Belgian Gaming Commission. He studied law at the university of Brussels, criminology at the university of Leuven and social work at Campus Kortrijk. He has a large experience in legislative and regulatory advice and enforcement in the field of gambling.  He coordinates regulatory gambling issues in Belgium and follows the European debate on the gambling market with special interest. He actively took part in public debates and wrote different articles related to gambling. He has been elected as Project Leader and Convenor to elaborate a European online reporting standard on the request of the European Commission. He also edited a report on lootboxes published on the website of the Belgian Gaming Commission.

Sandra Morgan

Ms Sandra Morgan

Ms. Sandra Douglass Morgan serves as Chair and Executive Director of the Nevada Gaming Control Board where she is responsible for the Board’s daily operations, including managing a $44 million dollar budget and approximately 400 employees in five cities throughout Nevada.

Sandra was appointed to this role by Governor Steve Sisolak for a 4-year term from January 28, 2019 to January 28, 2023.  She was previously appointed to the Nevada Gaming Commission in 2018 and to the Nevada Athletic Commission in 2017 by former Governor Brian Sandoval. While serving as a Gaming Commissioner, she was also the Director of External Affairs for AT&T Services, Inc. She formerly served as the City Attorney for the City of North Las Vegas, and was the first African-American City Attorney in the state of Nevada. Prior to her public service with the City, she served as a Litigation Attorney for one of the world’s largest gaming companies.

Her awards and honors include the Corporate to Community Connector award from the National Urban League Young Professionals, “Women in Business and Politics” award from the Urban Chamber of Commerce, Ladies of Distinction Award from Olive Crest, a non-profit organization dedicated to assisting abused and neglected children, the National Bar Association’s Nation’s Best Advocates “40 under 40,” and Attorney of the Year Award by the Las Vegas Chapter of the National Bar Association.

Sandra is a member of the State Bar of Nevada. She earned her B. A. in Political Science from the University of Nevada, Reno and her J. D. from the William S. Boyd School of Law at University of Nevada, Las Vegas. She resides in Southern Nevada with her husband, Don Morgan, where they raise their two children.

Nicholas Aaron Khoo

Mr Nicholas Khoo

With over 15 years of diverse experience, Nicholas has been an entrepreneur, investor, and board member in businesses, charities, and government. Having directly reported to Fortune 500 CEOs, Nicholas also led a regional team for Visa helping clients like Tencent, Alibaba, and AirAsia manage their risks in digital transactions, having served on Visa’s Asia Pacific Merchant Sales & Solutions leadership.

Nicholas Khoo is the Chairman of the Singapore‘s Cybersports and Online Gaming Association (SCOGA). Mr Khoo has also served as a member of the 13th, 14th, and 15th National Youth Council of Singapore. Under Mr. Khoo's leadership, SCOGA Esports Academy has received more than 1,000 students, and more than a million people have actively participated in SCOGA’s offline activities. Mr. Khoo has chaired various national initiatives, including using games to promote online safety for students as well as  encouraging students to come up with ideas to bring Singaporeans closer together and improve online wellness.

In Asia Pacific, Mr. Khoo has chaired the first official ASEAN esports event and delivered a speech at the Wuzhen World Internet Conference on keeping young people safe online.

Plenary Session 4 - Raising Standards to Protect Consumers from Gambling Harms

Audrey Seah

Ms Audrey Seah

Ms. Audrey Seah heads the Gambling Safeguards Division (GSD) in the Ministry of Social and Family Development, Singapore. The team formulates and coordinates policies and programmes to address the harms of problem gambling. The work involves upstream public education efforts to the provision of counselling and treatment services for problem gamblers.

Ms. Seah has been with the public service sector for 20 years. She has worked on a range of community matters, developing policies for aging and disability issues, racial and religious harmony, as well as the promotion of volunteerism and philanthropy. Prior to joining GSD, Ms. Seah was at the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth.

Shelley White

Ms Shelley White

Ms. Shelley White is one of Canada’s foremost visionary leaders who has dedicated her life and career to empowering organizations that create better futures for thousands of people in their communities. In 2017, she became the new CEO of the Responsible Gambling Council (RGC) which is an independent non-profit organization dedicated to problem gambling prevention. 

Shelley leads the organization in their mission to promote responsible gambling and reduce problem gambling. The organization is a centre of excellence in responsible gambling, and it accomplishes this in four ways; conducting research to develop evidence-based responsible gambling policies, programs and standards; using the research to develop and implement innovative prevention, education and social marketing programs; by offering gambling operators, land-based and online, accreditation as responsible gambling operations under the RG Check Program; and RGC collaborates with academics and regulators to provide thought leadership to the ongoing development of responsible gambling practices.

Over the last 30 years, Shelley has also held a variety of executive positions also in the non-profit sector for the country’s most recognized and trusted national institutions, including United Way, Kidney Foundation of Canada and the YMCA. Earning a reputation as a champion of social change, Shelley has received United Way Worldwide’s Common Good Award, the Queen’s Jubilee Award for outstanding achievement in voluntary service, Ontario’s Leading Women Building Communities Award, The Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC) Champion Award, Volunteer MBC’s 2017 Bonnie Yagar Award for Community Engagement Leadership and has been named one of Mississauga’s Top 10 Most Influential Leaders.

Mark Vander Linden

Mr Mark Vander Linden

Since 2013 Mark Vander Linden has served as Director of Research and Responsible Gaming for the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC).  In this role he manages an extensive research agenda to advance the understanding of responsible gaming, gambling disorders and the social and economic impacts of casino gambling in Massachusetts.  Additionally, he works collaboratively with casino operators and other stakeholders to design and implement a range of casino and community-based responsible gaming initiatives intended to promote positive play and reduce gambling related harm.  Prior to joining MGC, Mark directed the Office of Problem Gambling Treatment and Prevention at the Iowa Department of Public Health.  Mark serves on the Board of Directors of the National Center for Responsible Gaming.  He received his Masters in Social Welfare from the University of California, Berkeley with honors.  Mark has clinical experience in community-based settings with addiction, HIV/AIDS issues, and children and family mental health. 

Plenary Session 5 - Prevention of Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing & Gambling Crimes

Deculan Goh

Mr Deculan Goh

Deputy Assistant Commissioner (DAC) of Police Deculan Goh joined the Singapore Police Force in 1998 as an Inspector of Police. In his 20 years of service, Deculan has gone through various postings in the Police, especially in the investigations fraternity.

Deculan has served stints in the Secret Societies Branch (anti-gang), intellectual property rights branch and Special Investigations Section (including Murder investigations) of the Criminal Investigations Department.

As Officer in Charge and subsequently Head of the Secret Societies Branch, Deculan had to conduct operations and investigations to suppress the gang situation in Singapore.

As Deputy Head of the Intellectual Property Rights Branch, Deculan had to plan and implement strategies to curb the counterfeit situation at that time.

As Head of the Special Investigations Section, Deculan led a team to investigate into Murder, kidnapping and Little India Riots, Strike by SMRT bus drivers and major incidents in Singapore.

In between, Deculan was also seconded to the Joint Operations Group (JOG) of the Ministry of Home Affairs. Whilst in JOG, Deculan had to manage incidents across the entire Home Team, including Police, Prisons and Narcotics related incidents.

Deculan is now the Assistant Director of the Specialised Crime Division of the Criminal Investigations Department. His area of coverage includes secret societies, intellectual property, organised crime, financial investigations, unlicensed money lending, prostitution, gambling and casino crime.

Jasmine Cher

Ms Jasmine Cher

Ms. Cher is the Assistant Director (Policy and Ops) in the Commercial Affairs Division, Singapore Police Force. Ms. Cher joined the Commercial Affairs Department as a Commercial Affairs Officer in 2001. In September 2017, she was appointed Assistant Director of the Policy and Operations Division, Financial Investigation Group in the Commercial Affairs Department. She oversees the development of law enforcement policy in relation to money laundering, terrorism financing and other financial crime. She also participates actively at international AML/CFT fora such as the Financial Action Task Force and the Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering.

Regulatory Insights


Speakers at the 5th Singapore Symposium on Gambling Regulation and Crime give us their first-hand regulatory insights into developments around the world.

Mike Sarquis
Executive Director
Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation (OLGR), Queensland

Mr Mike Sarquis

Q1. How has OLGR leveraged on technology in its regulatory work? What are some positive impacts and challenges that technology has presented that would be useful to share with fellow regulators? 

OLGR seeks to continuously improve its services, and has taken action to:
  • streamline approval processes through the acceptance of approvals/recommendation prepared by other jurisdictions for EGM and FATG products;

  • work with operators to allow for a variety of gaming products to be accommodated within the regulatory framework, including by accepting multiple gaming machine protocols beyond OLGR’s preferred standard; and

  • providing casino operators with an automated verification and approval process for certain low risk EGM products.

OLGR has also worked with the operators to allow for the digital recording of their internal control systems, approved equipment registers and various other operational matters relevant to the conduct of gaming at the casino, so as to cut costs and reduce resources required to maintain compliance with their regulatory requirements.  

Casino operators have also been looking to utilise advancements in technology to improve their operating systems.  One such measure includes the adoption of an automated counting system for the counting of cash, vouchers and tickets from tables, electronic table games and gaming machines.

From a regulatory perspective, a controlled and automated money handling environment enhances auditing, accounting and administrative requirements and controls within a casino.

How does OLGR encourage innovation within the organisation and from the operators? 

Casinos and gaming operators in general continue to evolve and adapt their gaming products to embrace technological advancements and the changing demands and expectations of patrons. This has resulted in the introduction, or proposed introduction of a number of new gambling products within the Queensland gaming market, often requiring the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation to adapt and find innovative new ways to regulate non-traditional gaming features and products.

As a regulator, it is important to keep abreast of trends in the industry and be sufficiently agile to respond to those developments while maintaining the core regulatory standards of maintaining integrity, fairness and probity. Accordingly, OLGR is looking to modernise its legislation to be technology neutral, support innovation while ensuring consumer protection and balancing flexibility with enforceability.

Shelley White
Chief Executive Officer
Responsible Gambling Council (RGC), Ontario

Ms Shelley White

Q1. What are some key global trends and measures to address problem gambling that would be useful for regulators (particularly Asian ones) to know?

RG as a Key Driver

a) Regulators and operators around the world have recognised the utility of responsible gambling standards and accreditation to strengthen and maintain best practices. Regulators have embedded RG in their strategic plans, strengthened RG regulations and increased expectations and accountability of operators. We are also seeing some of the large operators in both venue based and online gambling sectors, take a leadership role in publicly promoting their responsible gambling programs; increasing their investment in their own RG programs, as well as making substantial investments in government and non-profit led programs; establishing measurable goals; and incorporating RG messaging and tools into their games.

b) Increasingly, regulators and operators are adopting accreditation to
validate the efficacy of their responsible gambling programs, as well as
demonstrate their commitment to consumer protection and being socially responsible.

Customer Centric Engagement

a) RG organisations and operators recognise that gambling attracts a very diverse group of players. Therefore, they are using a “segmentation” approach to delivering RG programs and services. Programs, services and messaging must be framed for different types of players to authentically engage them. Some examples of this include using the proper tone and manner, optimising different channels and touch points, making changes to the talent management strategy to recruit and retain the right talent for this customer centric approach, as well as implementing a more sophisticated training program for venue employees to recognise the different market segments and how to interact with them.

RG and Consumer Behavior

a) A proactive approach to provide RG information and education to vulnerable populations such as youth, young adults, indigenous communities, seniors and men.

b) Establishment of RG Information Centres in gambling venues.

c) Focus on establishing evidence based and impactful responsible gambling standards and practices.

RG and Emerging Technologies

a) New technology is available and continuously being developed which promotes positive play and harm minimisation.

    1. Gaming equipment manufacturers are using technology to facilitate gaming protection. For example, they are providing players with the option to set money and time limits for their gaming activity, and reminding players when they have reached their limits. Responsible gambling messages are also embedded directly into the gaming screen, and provide players with reports on the amount of time and money they have spent. Using logarithms, online operators can detect moderate and high risk behavior and increase the amount of RG messaging and decrease advertising.

    2. Some regulators have formalised expectations that operators will optimise technology tools to promote responsible gambling and harm minimisation to players. Operators who do not adopt these tools will be fined and possibly shut down.

    3. Digital currency is becoming more accessible and is now accepted by certain online gambling sites as a legitimate form of payment.


RG and Online Gambling

a) Between 2018 and 2024, the global online gambling market is project to more than double from US$46bil to at least US$94bil. This includes online formats for casino games, poker and sports and race betting. (Statistica, 2018).

b) Given the elevated risk to public health by some of these game forms (e.g. online sports betting) that is exacerbated by easy 24/7 access and targeted advertising, regulators will (and are) facing increasing pressure to govern industries.

c) Gaming versus Gambling. The blurring of the lines between gaming and gambling has become increasingly opaque, to the point that gambling is being incorporated into games (i.e. loot-boxes, skins and betting within games) and people can now bet on gamers (i.e. eSports). Regulators must continuously monitor this blurring of the lines and modernise regulations to address this trend. Belgium has banned loot-boxes. And recently game manufacturers Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo have committed to making loot-boxes more transparent.


Q2. Are there anything which regulators should do to prepare ourselves for these trends?

RGC recommends the following measures to prepare for these trends:

a) Use a balanced scorecard to establish key metrics to measure and communicate key performance indicators, for the RG program.

b) Invest in the implementation of RG Information Centres in gambling venues to actively engage players by identifying key market segments and developing specific marketing and management strategies to effectively communicate RG to your diverse customer base.

c) Develop and implement a technology strategy to optimise technology in the provision of responsible gambling solutions.

d) Incorporate an online gambling plan, into the technology strategy, address rapid changes to online gambling, as well as the blurring of the lines between gaming and gambling.

e) Invest in the implementation of an annual research and evaluation plan to facilitate evidenced based regulations and standards are in place and that they are having a positive impact on player attitudes and behavior.

f) Work with gaming equipment manufacturers to incorporate RG into games. Consider establishing a technical standards lab to assess new games to ensure they meet RG standards, prior to making them available to patrons.

g) Consider how Singapore will manage the availability of digital currency.

Sandra Morgan
Nevada Gaming Control Board

Ms Sandra Morgan

Q1. What are some useful insights for regulators that may be drawn from Nevada’s experiences as a regulator of both casino and non-casino gambling products? What are some of the challenges faced in dealing with these two groups of regulatees and does NGCB adopt different stances or considerations for different regulates?

As a regulator of both casino and non-casino gambling products, Nevada has the unique benefit of being able to rely on its well-established statutory framework and regulations that have been tested, revised, and improved for over 50 years. With regard to casino products, the simultaneous goal and challenge is to ensure that our mature regulatory requirements are still relevant as technology continues to evolve. There has been significant development and growth in non-casino gambling products over the last couple of decades, and with new products consistently being proposed, it is imperative that the Nevada Gaming Control Board continues to review our regulations to 1) determine if the activity or product needs to be regulated, and 2) determine the appropriate licensure that may be necessary.  

Q2. What are the recent trends and developments in non-casino gambling products that would be useful for regulators to know? How should regulators respond to these emerging trends and developments?

In Nevada, recent trends in non-casino gambling products include the growth of mobile device based products with regard to sports betting, online gambling, and the use of mobile applications to interact with gaming-related systems. Those involved in non-casino gambling products may not be as familiar with the high level of strict regulation required of the gambling industry. As regulators, it is important to balance the need for strict regulation while providing the industry the ability to test and eventually implement new casino and non-casino gaming products. 


5th Symposium banner.jpg_resized