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Dad cashed out son's education fund to gamble

Dad cashed out son's education fund to gamble
Thursday, Feb 23, 2012
The New Paper

A father was so hooked on soccer betting that he cashed out his 10-year-old son's insurance policy to support his addiction.

Peter (not his real name) was in debt to the tune of $200,000, which he had borrowed from banks, moneylenders and loan sharks.

As a last resort, the administrative officer in his early 30s cashed out his son's endowment policy, which he had bought in 2006 for the boy's future education.

Peter's story was shared by Ms Anne Chui, a counsellor from the National Addictions Management Service (Nams), at a problem gambling forum last Saturday.

The event was held to help educate the public about issues related to problem gambling.

A Lianhe Zaobao report last week said the Addiction Medicine Clinic at Changi General Hospital has treated more people for problems related to gambling.

It treated 47 such patients last year, up from 34 in 2010.

Ms Chui told The New Paper that she met Peter in 2009, over 10 years after he had been exposed to soccer betting while serving national service.

For a decade, his bets were small, mostly under $100. But he had a big win in 2008.

With just a $100 bet, he won over $5,000. This win made him believe that he could make big money through betting.

Myths used to 'justify' gambling

Click on thumbnail to view. Story continues after photos.
(Photos: ST, Reuters, Internet, TNP)

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