For centuries, gambling has remained a popular activity among people, but cheating has always been a major concern. From marking cards to using loaded dice, people have come up with various methods to cheat at gambling. Recently, the use of magnets implanted in fingers to manipulate dice in a popular game called hi-lo, sic-bo, or dai siu in Asia has come to light.
Thaiger has reported a case of a man from Thailand who had been using magnets implanted in his fingers for 40 years to cheat at dice games.
Dr. Wat Lun of the Wiwat X-ray Clinic-Lab in Chon Buri removed the magnets after the man decided to take a flight and was worried that they might set off the airport security alarm. According to Lun, the man had “two very tightly embedded magnets” on his left hand, one on the middle finger and the other on the ring finger.
The man had the magnets implanted so that he could manipulate the dice in the hi-lo or sic-bo game. In this game, players place bets on possible outcomes of a dice roll, such as whether the total number will be between 1-11 or 11-18 or whether it will be an odd or even number.
While illegal gambling is prevalent in Thailand, there are no legal casinos and penalties for playing dice in an illegal casino could land someone in prison for three years and see them fined 5,000 baht. The use of magnets to cheat at gambling is not new, and it is believed that cheaters used strong magnets to manipulate the reels of mechanical slot machines. However, it is unclear whether the technique was particularly effective, and there is anecdotal evidence that it might be an urban myth.
Nonetheless, the incident in Thailand highlights the lengths some people will go to cheat at games of chance.