Thai police arrest 5,000 for World Cup betting

By Brad Allen
Thai police have arrested 5,064 people for illegal betting during the Brazil World Cup.

The majority of those arrested were punters, with 258 bookmakers and 127 bet-slip runners also detained.

If convicted they face a two-year prison sentence and £40 fine.

But Police Major-General Chantavit Ramasut indicated that most would receive a suspended sentence unless there were large sums of money involved.

More than 2,000 betting websites were also shut down during the tournament.

Thailand's new junta is cracking down on betting to "uphold social order".

Ramasut warned of a potential crime spike as desperate gamblers turn to robbery to pay off their debts.

Horseracing and the lottery are the only legal forms of gambling in the Kingdom.

Around 3,800 people were arrested for gambling during the 2010 World Cup.

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