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BANGKOK INTERNATIONAL SCAMS UPDATE

DakLak

Holds PhD in Packing
 
Posts: 130
Joined: January 27th, 2005

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Tags: duty free, scams, bangkok, thailand, jail, King Power, cheating, avoid duty-free area, taxis, pirates, black licence, shady businesses.
  • Added on: July 25th, 2009
Thai Transport Minister Sohpon Zarum made an inspection trip to the airport and ordered the Airports of Thailand to step up measures to prevent extortion gangs preying on international air passengers.

The Bangkok Post reports that organised gangs are allegedly operating from duty-free shops, and are “cheating tens of thousands of baht from foreign tourists. Some reports highlighted KING POWER duty free.

The reports claim that the gangs, apparently operating in collusion with duty free employees and policemen, intimidate and browbeat accused foreign shoplifters and thieves into paying large "fines" in order to escape lengthy incarceration and trial and return to their own countries.

At least one European country has warned its citizens not to shop in the duty-free area of Suvarnabhumi at all, and the alleged cheating has been featured in reports by the BBC and others.

Recent reports fingered KING POWER in this scam which has resulted in international travellers being jailed - a thing to be avoided anywhere but especially in Bangkok!

These duty-free scams are in addition to the age-old Bangkok problems of so-called "black-licence" taxis or pirate which have no authorisation, or insurance and are often mechanically unfit, to carry passengers, and airport touts who point arriving tourists to unwanted hotels and other shady businesses.
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What's a Thorn Tree?
Is it like the tree I saw in Manila with all the garbage sticking to it like leaves?

Siam Jai

Armchair Traveler
 
Posts: 49
Joined: November 30th, 2008

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  • Added on: July 26th, 2009
The Bangkok Post hasn't reported on any organized gangs etc.... they have only reported on what some foreign reports and their 'victims' have reported. Same goes as for the other reports mentioned above.

In Paragraph 3 you write:

"Paying large "fines" in order to escape lengthy incarceration"

In paragraph 5 you write

"Scams which has resulted in international travellers being jailed".

Since King Power have stepped forward with their CCTV evidence of the British couple thieving at the airport www.kingpower.com - the the couple (including the Irish thief) have suddenly gone all quiet and stopped talking to the press.

This 'scam' report first started with a Malaysian couple who claimed total innonece when they were arrested for theft, claimed they had been set up set up / planted on etc..... See for yourself if they are oh.. so innocent at:
www.kingpower.com

DakLak

Holds PhD in Packing
 
Posts: 130
Joined: January 27th, 2005

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  • Added on: July 26th, 2009
The trouble with Kings CCTV footage is that it is not that of the female of the 'British couple'. The picture is of someone else.

Newspapers all over Europe are detailing complaints about Bangkok International and whilst it is OK for you to defend your country there are simply too many complaints for there not to be something going on in Bangkok.

The best thing is to avoid Kings - let them take video's of their employees and travellers can travel on unmolested by duty free scams and crooked police.

If there was nothing bad going on why is YOUR minister instructing that these rackets (against passengers) be investigated?

And don't tell me there are no pirate taxis or taxis with fast meters, either. Th hotel touts are obvious.

Thai penalties are very stiff, particularly the prison conditions, and travellers don't really need this type of complication because things are rough financially.

Take a look at: < http://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&safe= ... arch&meta= > or < http://www.bangkokpost.com/forum/viewto ... ?f=&t=3280 >.

All travellers need do is to be aware and avoid Kings.
-------------------------------->
What's a Thorn Tree?
Is it like the tree I saw in Manila with all the garbage sticking to it like leaves?

Siam Jai

Armchair Traveler
 
Posts: 49
Joined: November 30th, 2008

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  • Added on: July 27th, 2009
According to the journalist who was one who originally leaked this story of the British couple (found at www.andrew-drummond.com) the couple have not disputed the fact that it is them in the video. The journalist too believes it is them in the video.

Yes, prison conditions are stiff and so is the prison sentence for petty theft in Thailand. As what we now know, the couple probably took the advice of the British embassy and paid the fine. Then, 'boo-hoo' go home and complain about it - just say you were scammed, better than telling the truth, isn't it?

aguadulche

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Lost in Place
 
Posts: 79
Joined: July 13th, 2009
Location: East Coast/Seat 2A/

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  • Added on: July 28th, 2009
Siam Jai wrote:According to the journalist who was one who originally leaked this story of the British couple (found at http://www.andrew-drummond.com) the couple have not disputed the fact that it is them in the video. The journalist too believes it is them in the video.

Yes, prison conditions are stiff and so is the prison sentence for petty theft in Thailand. As what we now know, the couple probably took the advice of the British embassy and paid the fine. Then, 'boo-hoo' go home and complain about it - just say you were scammed, better than telling the truth, isn't it?


Well, here is the BBC report which gives a balanced view on this.

cayce

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Street Food Connoisseur
 
Posts: 743
Joined: October 7th, 2004
Location: Borneo

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  • Added on: July 28th, 2009
According to the BBC News:
The company that owns the duty free shop, King Power, has since put the CCTV video on its website, which does appear to show her putting something in her bag. However the security guards found no wallet on either of them.


However, King Power (see link by Siam Jai) explains that when security guards approached the couple, the man immediately left his wife and went into a restroom, where they eventually found the missing wallet in the garbage bin.

So yes, perhaps it's their word against the couple, but the video seems to be pretty damning to me. Did the couple deny the video?

The way I see it, thousands of people go through Bangkok International Airport every day, of course there is bound to be shop-lifting once in a while - kleptomania, whatever you call it, am pretty sure it happens regularly at airport stores or wherever there is high traffic. Corrupt police/folks see an opportunity to scam money, and they take it.

Morale of the story is to be highly vigilant when you're travelling, and perhaps shop-lift at the comfort of your home country. ;)

Anyway, my sis says that the stuff sold at King Power are over-priced.

crazyal

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Street Food Connoisseur
 
Posts: 540
Joined: November 3rd, 2005

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  • Added on: July 31st, 2009
Siam Jai wrote:According to the journalist who was one who originally leaked this story of the British couple (found at http://www.andrew-drummond.com) the couple have not disputed the fact that it is them in the video. The journalist too believes it is them in the video.

Yes, prison conditions are stiff and so is the prison sentence for petty theft in Thailand. As what we now know, the couple probably took the advice of the British embassy and paid the fine. Then, 'boo-hoo' go home and complain about it - just say you were scammed, better than telling the truth, isn't it?



This is sort of like tourists who get caught with dope in their bags, don't they immediately say they were "set up by the police" and they are not guilty!

In around 14 years and lots of trips through old Don Muang and Suvarnabhumi airports I have never purchased anything from the King Power vendors! The most I ever spend at an airport is for something cheap to eat. (Good cheap food court, bottom level near Airport Express kiosk at Suvarnabhumi, open 24 hours too!)



"Morale of the story is to be highly vigilant when you're travelling, and perhaps shop-lift at the comfort of your home country."

**
Yep, if you are going to steal stuff do it at home where your relatives can visit you in a nice cozy Western type prison instead of flying halfway around the world to see you!
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Travel the world now before you get too old to do it!



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