Local actor Henry Thia has found himself at the center of controversy after appearing in a YouTube advert that promoted an illegal gambling platform. The Henry Thia gambling controversy has brought up lots of rumors and speculations concerning the actor’s alleged affiliation with illegal gambling.
However, Thia’s agency (King Kong Media Production) released a recent statement on Saturday stating that Thia was not even aware that the advert would promote illegal gambling and that he had been unknowingly duped by the advertising company. The agency even added a clause in the contract in order to ensure that the livestreaming platform did not promote any illegal activities.
According to his agency, they received an invitation (in the middle of 2022) from an advertising company in Malaysia. The idea was to get Henry Thia on board to promote a livestreaming platform. To make sure everything was done right, Thia was even accompanied by his agent throughout the filming process, which took place in Malaysia.
Here comes the uneven part; the advertising company later sent Thia’s agency a copy of the finished advert before it was run. However, the uploaded video did not tally with the agency’s approved version. According to them, there was a little bit of trickery done with the video. It had been edited to include parts regarding illegal gambling in the final 10 seconds.
Fortunately, King Kong Media Production has already hired a Malaysian lawyer. The agency has plans to take legal action against the advertising company and the livestreaming platform. Thia, who is known to fans as Hui Ge, has also expressed his disappointment and stated that he would not have knowingly participated in anything illegal.
“I know about the perils of gambling, and I often warn others on Facebook not to get involved in the habit,” he said.
Actor Mark Lee (the founder of King Kong Media Production), while talking with Chinese-language newspaper Shin Min Daily News took it upon himself for not doing thorough checks on the livestreaming platform. From what we’ve seen, the 56-second advert actually started off normally. It showed Thia using his mobile device before stumbling upon the livestreaming app, which he later downloaded.
It is until the final 10 seconds, you get to see a message promoting illegal gambling on the app’s interface, which Thia had shown to the camera. Investigations are ongoing, and it is not the first time a local actor has found themselves in trouble over promoting illegal gambling. Fellow actor, Terence Cao also got into a situation like this Henry Thia gambling controversy.
Just so you know, under the Gambling Control Act, all gambling activities in Singapore are prohibited unless they are licensed, class-licensed, or exempted. Advertising for unlawful gambling is also an offense, and individuals found to have done so face a fine of up to $20,000.
Lots of netizens have opined that it is essential for celebrities to ensure that any advertisements are legal and do not promote illegal activities. To avoid something similar to this Henry Thia gambling controversy, it is also crucial for these superstars to do proper checks on the platforms they advertise. All these will definitely do well to avoid any misunderstandings or illegal activities.