Bluedragon Lottery cleared of overpricing lottery tickets

Bluedragon Lottery
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The Bluedragon Lottery has been found not guilty of overpricing lottery tickets as the Criminal Court rejected a request to close its online sales platforms, according to the Bangkok Post.

The company’s headquarters was raided in March and two million lottery tickets were seized by police amid allegations it was responsible for driving prices above the government-defined 80 baht figure. Vendors are currently selling tickets at 100, 110 and 120 baht.

Bluedragon’s owner, Pachara Messiyaporn, denied the claims following his arrest on four charges in April, but the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society filed an appeal to shut Bluedragon’s three online lottery ticket sales platforms.

However, on Thursday, that request was rejected after it was ruled the company did not raise lottery ticket prices and merely leased out its online platforms, where buyers and sellers met and agreed ticket prices.

The court also agreed that the concealment of ticket barcodes neither damaged the Government Lottery Office (GLO) nor enabled Bluedragon to gain any illicit interest.

In March, Prayut Chan-o-cha, Prime Minister of Thailand, was forced to defend the government’s recent crackdown on alleged overpriced lottery ticket vendors, discounting accusations that they were politically motivated.

There were suggestions that the ‘five tigers’, the large distributors that won the bulk of ticket distribution quotas from the GLO for an extended period, had played a leading role.