Officials in Phuket raided 2 Phuket Casinos after receiving complaints of gambling operations. The provincial police arrested 87 illegal gamblers after violating the province’s Emergency Decree. Illegal gambling is one of the biggest problems in many countries.
Thailand is strict when it comes to gambling. The Thai government restricted all types of gambling in the country, except the state’s lottery and horse racing. Despite the strict restrictions on gambling, illegal gambling operations in the country is rampant.
The government has been tracking down illegal gambling. The Center of Gambling Studies and Center for Social and Business Development revealed that 57 percent of the population of the country is involved in gaming in the past year. The value increased by 1.4 percent to 30.4 million compared to 2017.
Two raids in a day
At around 3:30 pm, the officials raided a casino in Talat Nua of Muang District. The police arrested 45 illegal gamblers and collected wagers amounting to 62,420 baht. The cops also found a 15-gram gold necklace in the casino.
The second casino raided in Sisunthon of Thalang district was fenced by metal sheets surrounded by wide parking spaces. The police captured 42 people and collected wages amounting to 64,260. The arrested will face illegal gambling charges with violations of the Emergency Decree.
The Center reported that 700,000 respondents are punters who are first-time gamblers. It was revealed that many children in the country are involved in gambling.
Gamblers go online to avoid restrictions
Illegal online gambling sites are rampant in the country. Gamblers chose to go online to avoid government restrictions. Online gambling has continued to grow worldwide. As the industry rises in popularity and market share, the risk of problem gambling also increases. Market figures revealed that the industry would grow to $60 billion this year, with a compound annual growth rate exceeding 9 percent.
Online gambling in Thailand is growing despite the ban on gambling. Currently, the country has no legislation that covers online gambling. The Gambling Act of B.E.2478 regulates gambling in the country. The law prohibits citizens from playing in casinos and sportsbooks. The prohibition includes betting on animal fights, dice games, slot machines, and other casino games.
The country shut down 748 illegal gambling sites in September 2019. Gamblers in Thailand are hooked in online casinos hosted in other countries to avoid restrictions of the government. The Ministry of Information and Communication Technology started the campaign to track down online gambling sites operating in the country.
The government regulator worked with local internet providers to track down the websites. The government blocked the IP addresses of gamblers visiting the websites.
The survey of the Center of Gambling Studies in Thailand revealed that only 1.6 percent of their respondents played in online gambling sites. The figure concluded that online gambling is not yet widespread in the country. Other countries, including the US, are starting to welcome online gaming.
Lawmakers in many US states are now working to regulate and control the industry. Online gambling can serve as an alternative source of funds for the states.
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