Police arrested a group of 32 elderly bridge players in Pattaya, Thailand. Police, military and local officials raided a bridge club in Pattaya and arrested 32 foreigners including British, Swedish, Norwegian and Australian tourists from the club.
Colonel Suthat Pumphanmuang, Police Superintendent of Pattaya said, “There were 32 people, all of them foreigners arrested for gambling on Wednesday night.”
Although, they said that they were not playing for the money, police claimed that the bridge club broke the law by “possessing more than 120 playing cards at one time”.
The offence comes under section 8 of playing cards act of 1935 of Thailand, which states that a person cannot be allowed to possess more than 120 playing cards in one time. The officers had seized the decks of cards, computers and a book from the club as evidence.
Colonel Suthat said that the raid was conducted as a member of public complained to the junta’s anti-corruption centre.
According to Pattaya One, police got a tip-off from the informant about a regular gathering of foreign nationals in a rented room above the Alto’s Restaurant in south Pattaya. The name of the club is Jomtien & Pattaya Bridge Club and these foreigners met there 3 times a week for this popular pass time. The organizer of the event, Mr. Jeremy Watson, a 74-year-old British national, was detained by the police for further questioning. All the others were freed on a 5000 baht ($195) bail. They were in the police custody for 12 hours.
Police informed that 12 British, 3 Norwegians, three Swedes, two Australians, a German, a Dane, a Canadian, a New Zealander, and a Irish nationals were among the arrested.
It has been reported that the Thai Junta Chief Prayut Chan-O-Cha , after seizing power in 2014, has sworn to eradicate corruption and criminal network, irrespective of foreign and domestic. He has also established a corruption centre, where members of public can report abuses and crimes.