According to some newspaper reports a group of UK bingo players have been fined for playing a game of Bingo in a pub in Portugal.
According to the source a total of 28 UK and Irish bingo players were hit with a fine for playing bingo at the Yorkshire Tavern in Albufeira.
The Bingo game was a fun game as the major prizes was a box of chocolate biscuits and some drinks. Everyone in the pub got arrested, even those not participating in the bingo game.
They have all been fined and received suspended sentences.
It does seem a bit strange that the pub could run a game of chance like this full well knowing that they need a license to do so.
It is also clear that Portuguese authorities are on a revenue drive as arresting and fining people who were simply in the pub is a bit much.
This is not the first time this kind of bingo fining thing has happened with Bingo players. A few years ago a similar scenario occurred in Turkey where a bunch of bingo players got arrested for gambling.
The owner of the pub is apparently mortified that this took place, the actions do seem to be heavy-handed as previously described.
The thing to make sure of though is that when running fun bingo games like this, the rules must be followed.
If they had simply run an online bingo game for fun there would have been no issue as there would have been no evidence and if the room is licensed in Europe the authorities would not have been able to arrest anyone.
We do feel for these bingo players and hope that the bar owner will make good all of their losses.
There is not much you can do about the suspended jail sentence though.
The moral of the story is therefore play bingo online.