Thai police form centre to suppress World Cup gambling

Royal Thai Police Pol. Gen. Damrongsak Kittipraphat, photo by Thai Rath.

Thai police have set up a gambling suppression centre amid the FIFA World Cup football tournament. The centre will operate until December 18, Thai media reported yesterday.

Almost all forms of gambling are illegal under Thai law, and police are concerned that football fans will gamble on World Cup results. Thai police will also take the following steps:

  • Both uniformed officers and those in plainclothes will inspect entertainment venues, hotels and game and internet shops to ensure no gambling is taking place.
  • Police will be monitoring the internet and social media for violations.
  • All cases will be investigated in detail with strict action taken against offenders.

This news comes after police announced at a press conference on Friday that they plan to crack down on entertainment venues in Pattaya. Major General Nantawut Suwanlaong laid out the rules that will apply to the 1,329 entertainment venues and restaurants that are registered to legally sell alcohol in the Bang Lamung district. The rules he listed are:

  1. No person under 20 can enter bars and entertainment venues.
  2. Underage people cannot purchase alcohol in any venues, including restaurants.
  3. Though different zones have closing times between midnight and 2am, all entertainment venues must be closed with no customers inside by the legal closing times.
  4. After the legal closing time, selling alcohol is strictly prohibited without exception.
  5. No weapons or illegal drugs are allowed in any entertainment venues.
  6. Human trafficking is strictly prohibited in any entertainment venue.
  7. Gambling is illegal and prohibited in every entertainment venue.

The major general said that tourists are required to have their passports on them or at least a copy including their stamp at all times. Pattaya Police will check the documents of tourists in these venues while doing nightly inspections. He said that recent incidents have prompted a strong response.

Time will tell how well Thai police will be able to suppress gambling during the World Cup festivities.

Crime NewsThailand News

Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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