Pakistani authorities have arrested around 100 people on charges of betting on World Cup football matches, a crime in this conservative Islamic republic, local media reported Tuesday.
In their first crackdown since the tournament kicked off in Germany last month, law enforcement agencies raided an underground bookmakers in the southern city of Karachi.
"We got information that some people were involved in betting on football World Cup matches so we raided the building in a main shopping area and arrested some 100 people," Citizens-Police Liaison Committee chief Sharfuddin Memon was quoted as saying by The News.
Gambling records and television sets were also seized and the case was handed to police for further investigation, Memon said.
Although Pakistan is not playing in the World Cup officials say there is a huge audience for the matches, The News reported.
Betting is illegal in Pakistan but police have regularly arrested illegal bookies involved in betting on cricket and horse racing.