Cyberabad police have busted an online cricket betting racket with the arrest of five bookies, who were involved in organising betting on an ongoing Pakistan Super League (PSL) match.
Police also seized over Rs 20 lakh in cash from the arrested while the search was on for the main accused.
Cyberabad Police Commissioner V. C. Sajjanar said on Tuesday that the arrests were made by Special Operation Team (SOT), Madhapur Zone, which has been keeping a close vigil on betting activity in view of the PSL 2021.
Acting on a tip off, SOT personnel conducted a raid in Nizampet under the limits of Bachupally police station in the early hours of Monday and arrested five bookies while they were exchanging the money related to cricket betting.
The police seized Rs 20.50 lakh cash, one betting board, one laptop, 33 mobile phones, one MI TV and one Hathway router from their possession.
All the six accused in the case are residents of Andhra Pradesh. Three of the accused are organisers. Main organiser Somanna, a resident of East Godavari district, is absconding.
According to the police, Somanna was the key person in this online cricket betting in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
Gunturi Satya Pavan Kumar and Uddara Raju Satheesh Raju took mainline access from the main organiser.
The accused hired Trinath, Nandipamu Bhaskar and Jakkapudi Prasad to operate the communicator board, laptop which are connected through main line. They had online access to numerous bookies in Hyderabad for commission.
The profit and loss of the gamblers/punters can be seen from time to time in the online betting apps like Live Line Guru, Cricket Mazza, Lotus, Bet-365, Bet fair provided by the agents. The illegal cash payment transactions of Cricket betting were online, but in some cases it was through cash.
Police said the cash transaction between Somanna and Pavan Kumar happened through hawala money. It is observed that many youth have indulged in this online cricket betting and losing high amounts of money through online cricket betting.
The police commissioner said parents should keep a strict vigil on their children. He was it was learnt that due to loss of money in betting and to repay the bookies, people are taking hand loans or selling property.