POLICE have confirmed that they checked pubs in Hawick during the final day of the Cheltenham Festival for illegal horse betting.
The swoop coincided with the festival’s main day – the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
Lothian and Borders Police said that no offences were detected and that licensing officers engaged with patrons and licensees.
Inspector John Scott commented: “We are aware that illegal betting practice has taken place in licensed premises in the Scottish Borders in the past and that many racing fans watch events in licensed premises, particularly during the Cheltenham Festival.
“While no offences were detected in this latest initiative, we wanted to send a message that police will take firm action against illegal betting, which is often linked to serious and organised criminality.”
The inspector said all those spoken to were positive about the police operation. And he confirmed similar operations would follow.