BANGKOK, July 4 (Xinhua) -- Around 10,000 people in Thailand have been arrested on charges of gambling on World Cup 2018.
Deputy Police Commissioner General Pol. Gen. Chalermkiat Srivorakhan disclosed on Wednesday that police have arrested some 10,000 suspected gamblers who allegedly bet on FIFA World Cup Russia 2018 soccer games since the middle of last month. That number of suspected gamblers was about twice as many as in 2014's world soccer tournament.
He said the increased number of the gambling suspects rounded up nationwide was primarily due to the easy, constant access to the betting games with the use of their cellphones.
Besides the arrests of those suspected gamblers, an estimated 40 million baht (about 1.27 million U.S. dollars) in assets have been confiscated and about 200 betting websites have been closed, the deputy police chief said.
The police crackdown on the illegal betting on the World Cup games was primarily designed to prevent crimes which, he said, might probably occur, given a large sum of money at stake.
The World Cup tournament, held every four years since 1930, has just entered the quarterfinal round and is scheduled to end with the final match by the middle of this month.