A bridge too far: Elderly Bridge players busted for ‘illegal gambling’ in Thailand

Tuesday, 08 Feb, 2016 0
Authorities in Thailand’s sin city of Pattaya have long been trying to clean up its image but police have now been accused of going just a little too far.
 
A group of 32 mostly elderly Western retirees have been busted on suspicion of illegal gambling – for playing Bridge.
 
The group were raided by not only police but members of the Thai military and local officials.
 
They were acting on an anonymous tip, Pattaya police chief Col. Sukathat Pumpanmuang said.
 
The group includes a 84-year Dutch woman, local media reported.
 
They were released on bail of THB 5,000 but will not be charged with illegal gambling..
 
However they could be charged under an obscure law which limits all individuals to no more than 120 unregistered playing cards in their possession.
 
Police found no proof of any money changing hands but seized computers, playing cards and a book with the results of each game logged.
 
The raid was heavily criticised by local and international media.
 
The gambling charges were dropped after the president of the Contract Bridge League of Thailand, Chodchoy Sophonpanich lobbied on the group’s behalf, insisting Bridge is recognised under Thai law as a sport and not gambling.
 
"Police know that bridge is a sport because a similar case happened before, but this time it was military and district officials who initiated the raid and they probably didn’t know," said Chaiyut Assanaiyarat, the bridge league’s manager.
 


Related News Stories :   Japan travel campaign to be extended     Hong Kong Christmas WinterFest returns     Flights at-risk as Hawaii volcano erupts     75th Outrigger anniversary celebrates their Hawai and Asia collection of resorts and hotels     Six of the best Colorado skiing experiences     Kazakh Tourism partners with Trip.com Group  

profileimage

TravelMole Editorial Team

Editor for TravelMole North America and Asia pacific regions. Ray is a highly experienced (15+ years) skilled journalist and editor predominantly in travel, hospitality and lifestyle working with a huge number of major market-leading brands. He has also cover in-depth news, interviews and features in general business, finance, tech and geopolitical issues for a select few major news outlets and publishers.



Most Read

Tommy Thompson CEO of St Kitts Tourism

Zsusa Szegner from Hungary

75th Outrigger Hawaii anniversary celebrates the largest collection of resorts and hotels

Outrigger Hotels & Resorts celebrate their expanded Asia Pacific portfolio on its 75th anniversary

VisitAlgarve has exceeded pre-Covid tourism revenues...Exec Dir Hugo Nascimento expects more

Tim Wolfe of Colorado Tourism explains the strategy that will keep international tourists coming

Sri Lanka Jean-Marc Flambert updates Graham McKenzie at WTM22

The Kingdom Cup comes back to Hilton Head Island

Private video

Jens, CEO of Barbados Tourism details the future tourism strategy for the country

Amy from Amelia Island talks to Graham McKenzie about the community strength within the destination

Nicole Stacey of Pensacola makes the case for a vacation in her community
TRAINING & COMPETITION

Price Based Country test mode enabled for testing United States (US). You should do tests on private browsing mode. Browse in private with Firefox, Chrome and Safari