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Malaysia’s home minister vouches for gambling kingpin

Malaysia’s Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has reportedly vouched for a Malaysian who is facing illegal bookmaking charges in Las Vegas, the South China Morning Post reported.

The minister reportedly sent a letter to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in support of Paul Phua Wei Seng, who was arrested in Las Vegas in July.

"Phua is neither a member nor is he associated with the 14K Triad in Malaysia," Zahid said in the letter addressed to FBI deputy director Mark F. Giuliano.

"Phua has, on numerous occasions, assisted the government of Malaysia on projects affecting our national security.

"Accordingly, we continue to call upon him to assist us from time to time and as such, we are eager for him to return to Malaysia."

Phua and his son are on trial in the U.S. after an FBI raid allegedly uncovered an illegal sports betting ring during a raid of luxury villas at a Caesars Entertainment casino.

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