Month: August 1999

  • Phuket NewsLawyer not well, Alice trial hearing postponed | Thaiger

    Lawyer not well, Alice trial hearing postponed

    PHUKET TOWN: Judge Amornpoj Kulwijit today postponed testimony in the trial of two people charged in connection with the stabbing death of 56-year-old British publican Roger Jennings at his home in Patong Hill Estate on December 15, 1997. The judge postponed the hearing after being told that Eakapong Aroonrat, lawyer for one of the accused, Jennings’ common-law wife Nongnut Tungkaburi,…

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  • Phuket NewsTax boss declares amnesty for errors in returns | Thaiger

    Tax boss declares amnesty for errors in returns

    PHUKET: The Chief of the Phuket Revenue Department has declared an amnesty for anyone who believes he or she may have made errors in filing a tax return. In a the first of a series of monthly columns in the Gazette, explaining Thai tax law and procedures, Annop Buakuen writes, “Staff from the tax office have been checking tax-payer’s returns…

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  • Phuket NewsBangkok Bank posts huge first-half loss | Thaiger

    Bangkok Bank posts huge first-half loss

    BANGKOK (AFP): Thailand’s biggest bank, Bangkok Bank Plc, today posted a huge first-half net loss of 26.98 billion baht, compared with a loss of 16.34 billion baht in the same period last year. Bank president Chartsiri Sophonpanich said that the result reflected the continued negative effect of massive non-performing loans on the banking system. “While the economic conditions of the…

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  • Phuket NewsFisherman drowns while diving for shellfish | Thaiger

    Fisherman drowns while diving for shellfish

    CHALONG: A 38-year-old fisherman drowned among the mangroves at Pakrongmudong, Tambon Vichit, yesterday afternoon. Police, who named the dead man as Virrut Sawatdirak, from Srakaew, said he and three friends had gone diving for shellfish. The friends told police that all had drunk some alcohol beforehand, “but not too much”. They did not realise that Khun Virrut was in trouble…

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  • Phuket NewsCurse follows tourist back to Thailand | Thaiger

    Curse follows tourist back to Thailand

    BANGKOK (AFP): A Thai tourist who said he had been cursed after taking stones as souvenirs from Australia’s famed Ayers Rock has returned the stones to the Australian embassy here, officials said today. The unidentified tourist had ignored signs asking visitors not to take pieces of Ayers Rock – a sacred site for Australian aborigines. He sent the two fist-sized…

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  • Phuket NewsPolice say poor economy puts brakes on accidents | Thaiger

    Police say poor economy puts brakes on accidents

    PHUKET: A senior policeman in Phuket told the Gazette today that Thailand’s poor economy is having at least one good effect – it has reduced the road accident rate. Pol Lt Col Teerapol Thipjaroen, deputy superintendent of Phuket Town Police Station, said, “There are a number of factors that have led to a fall in the accident rate, but one…

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  • Phuket NewsGazettes on a roll with KL Sevens wins | Thaiger

    Gazettes on a roll with KL Sevens wins

    KUALA LUMPUR: Despite a shortage of regular players, the Phuket Gazettes rugby team made it through to the semi-finals of the bowl competition at the 36th Guinness-Jonah Jones Rugby Sevens tournament. In the preliminary round, the Gazettes found themselves in the toughest group. The first game was against Cobra RFC, last year’s champions, who fielded a team jammed with Fijians,…

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  • Phuket NewsBangkok Airways probes passenger death | Thaiger

    Bangkok Airways probes passenger death

    BANGKOK (AFP): Bangkok Airways said today it had launched an investigation into the death of a 52-year-old German tourist who was apparently the victim of food poisoning. The dead man, identified only as Josef B, had flown on Bangkok Airways from Koh Samui to Bangkok shortly before boarding a Lauda Air flight to Austria yesterday morning. During that flight he…

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  • Phuket NewsWastewater project said to be on schedule | Thaiger

    Wastewater project said to be on schedule

    PHUKET TOWN: Phuket Municipal Councilor Ayoot Thansiriroj told the Gazette this morning that installation of the large wastewater pipe beneath Mae Luan Road in Phuket Town is now complete. The work, part of Phase Two of the municipality’s wastewater treatment project, began in May of this year. Starting next month, work will begin on laying pipe in Anuphasphuketkarn Road, near…

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  • Phuket NewsDhammakaya abbot surrenders to police | Thaiger

    Dhammakaya abbot surrenders to police

    BANGKOK (AFP): Watched by hundreds of bemused tourists and surrounded by a cordon of riot police, Phra Dhamachayo, the controversial abbot of Wat Phra Dhammakaya, surrendered to police today. The surrender ended a two-day stand-off between hundreds of police and thousands of his devotees, during which he defied calls by Prime Minister Chuan Leekpai and police to give himself up.…

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  • Phuket NewsCampaign to target Middle Eastern tourists | Thaiger

    Campaign to target Middle Eastern tourists

    PHUKET TOWN: The Phuket Tourist Association (PTA) is to launch a new campaign targeting travelers from the Middle East as a way to improve low-season tourism figures. Panu Massirat, a member of the PTA’s marketing committee, explained that two groups of Middle East tourists – high income and middle income – would be targeted. Both groups have the potential, he…

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  • Phuket NewsKrung Thai Bank chairman, five directors resign | Thaiger

    Krung Thai Bank chairman, five directors resign

    BANGKOK, Aug 24 (AFP): The chairman and five directors of Krung Thai Bank (KTB) resigned today after an inquiry was launched into allegations of mismanagement and questionable lending practices. The government yesterday announced an independent inquiry into the bank amid mounting criticism from opposition politicians who allege lending malpractices by KTB’s senior management. Finance Minister Tarrin Nimmanahaeminda, whose brother formerly…

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  • Phuket NewsJudge orders arrest of missing trial witness | Thaiger

    Judge orders arrest of missing trial witness

    PHUKET: Judge Amornpoj Kulwijit today issued warrants for the arrest of two prosecution witnesses who failed to appear this morning for a hearing in the ongoing trial of two people accused of the murder of Briton Roger Jennings. The two witnesses, Amara Meanteap and Weeranat Kammanochart, failed to appear despite twice being subpoenaed. The judge, issuing the arrest warrants, ordered…

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  • Phuket NewsLucky escape for tourists in bus accident | Thaiger

    Lucky escape for tourists in bus accident

    KATHU: Thirty nine tourists had a lucky escape yesterday, when a bus taking them from Le Meridien hotel in Patong to the airport slid partly off the road, but hit a traffic warning post preventing it from rolling down a mountainside. Two people were slightly hurt when the bus slid in rain, near the Pun Tuao Kong Chinese shrine above…

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  • Phuket NewsChinese President Jiang Zemin to visit Phuket | Thaiger

    Chinese President Jiang Zemin to visit Phuket

    PHUKET: The President of the People’s Republic of China, Jiang Zemin, will visit Phuket early next month. Mr Jiang will arrive on the evening of September 4 from Bangkok, where he will be a guest of HM the King. He will be accompanies by a party of 80 people, including security and medical staff. Planning for his visit has yet…

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  • Phuket NewsTwo drug dealers arrested | Thaiger

    Two drug dealers arrested

    PHUKET: Police on Thursday arrested two men for selling ya bah (methamphetamines). The first was a 28-year-old former petrol station worker from Trang, who sold the drug to undercover officers outside the Thairat Wittaya School in Kathu. After his arrest, he was found to be in possession of 197 pills. He confessed that he had come to Phuket 16 times…

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  • Phuket NewsHotels hit back at “gouging” allegations | Thaiger

    Hotels hit back at “gouging” allegations

    PHUKET: Room rates in major Phuket hotels, in US dollar terms, have fallen sharply between 1996 and 1998, claims the Southern Chapter of the Thai Hotels Association (THA), citing a survey it recently carried out. The THA conducted the survey to counter allegations that hotels had increased room rates by 30% to 50% to take advantage of high demand as…

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  • Phuket NewsMan caught stealing phone services | Thaiger

    Man caught stealing phone services

    PATONG: A 36-year-old German has been charged with theft after being caught tapping into a telephone line near Wat Suwankeereewong on the outskirts of Patong, along the Patong-Kathu road. Voravit Vorapiboonpong, chief of the Phuket Telecommunication Center of the Communications Authority of Thailand (CAT), told the Gazette that on Monday he was alerted by the CAT in Bangkok that someone…

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  • Phuket NewsNo more elephants in Phuket: Governor | Thaiger

    No more elephants in Phuket: Governor

    PHUKET: The Governor of Phuket, Chadej Insawang, has announced a ban on any more elephants being brought into the province for commercial purposes. Announcing the decision on Tuesday at a seminar, organized by the Department of Livestock Development and attended by 75 elephant keepers from Phuket, Phang Nga and Krabi, the Governor said, “Phuket has 170 elephants in 27 camps.…

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  • Phuket NewsMan found shot dead in tin mine | Thaiger

    Man found shot dead in tin mine

    PHUKET TOWN: Kupai Foundation staff found a corpse floating in an abandoned tin mine on Chao Fa Nok Rd on Sunday. Police called to the scene described the corpse as male, wearing an unbuttoned black shirt and Chinese trousers. Kupai Foundation staff found one gunshot wound in the back of the head and another in the right chest, with an…

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  • Phuket NewsQuake shakes northern Phuket, Phang Nga | Thaiger

    Quake shakes northern Phuket, Phang Nga

    MAI KHAW: Northern Phuket and southwestern Phang Nga experienced three minor earth tremors last night. No serious damage was reported. The tremors, felt at 11:36 pm, 11:38 pm and 1:59 am, shook homes between Phuket International Airport and Khok Kloy in Phang Nga. Amorn Chantanavivate, director of the Southwestern Meteorological Center, told the Gazette that the three shocks were caused…

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  • Phuket NewsThailand may bow out of IMF program | Thaiger

    Thailand may bow out of IMF program

    BANGKOK, Aug 17 (AFP) – Thailand has enough foreign reserves to bow out of its IMF program and abandon the remaining 3.7 billion dollars available in loans under the rescue package, Deputy Prime Minister and Commerce Minister Supachai Panitchpakdi said today. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has disbursed about 13.5 billion dollars to Thailand out of its 17.2 billion dollar…

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  • Phuket NewsTax chief urges foreigners to get it right | Thaiger

    Tax chief urges foreigners to get it right

    PHUKET TOWN: Annop Buakrean, chief of the Phuket Provincial Revenue Office, has appealed to business owners, particularly foreigners, to try to get their tax returns right. He told the Gazette this afternoon that his officers had checked a large number of dive shops recently and found that “in every single case” their tax returns for last year were incorrectly filed.…

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  • Phuket NewsUndercover police patrol Wachira Hospital | Thaiger

    Undercover police patrol Wachira Hospital

    PHUKET TOWN: Wachira Hospital and Phuket Town police have set up a special undercover police unit which is now patrolling the hospital to try to spot increasing numbers of thieves preying on outpatients and visitors. The setting up of the unit coincides with another theft from an outpatient. Sainahp Nounpai, 44, of Patong had gone to the hospital for a…

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  • Phuket NewsBig Balls-up at Bangkok Airport | Thaiger

    Big Balls-up at Bangkok Airport

    BANGKOK: Bangkok airport authorities said earlier today that they had launched an investigation into how excerpts from a pornographic video were shown on television monitors throughout the international terminal during coverage of a major football match. An airport spokesman said it was a mystery how a 20-second clip of a man and woman having sex was aired after Thailand [also]…

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  • Phuket NewsTong murder suspects released on bail | Thaiger

    Tong murder suspects released on bail

    PHUKET TOWN: Hugo Vandervelde, on trial for involvement in the murder of American Danis Wayne Tong in June 1997, was released on bail of 1 million baht on Friday. Vandervelde was arrested in November 1997 and had been in custody ever since. Chief Justice Ampan Sombatstapornkul told the Gazette, “His attorney failed on several occasions to persuade the Phuket Provincial…

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  • Phuket NewsJewelry shop raided after tourist complaint | Thaiger

    Jewelry shop raided after tourist complaint

    PHUKET TOWN: The manager of a major Phuket jewelry shop was arrested on Friday on a charge of illegal possession of shells and corals that are listed as protected species. Fishery Department officers visited the shop after receiving a complaint from a Thai tourist. They found the shell of a giant scaly clam, two Tritinid shells, and 110 pieces of…

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  • Phuket NewsBusinesses urged to mark King’s birthday | Thaiger

    Businesses urged to mark King’s birthday

    PHUKET TOWN: Phuket Governor Chadej Insawang has appealed for all business owners to join in with celebrations to mark the 72nd birthday of HM King Bhumibol Adulyadej on December 5. Businesses are urged to decorate their premises with royal emblems, signs, flags, and lights. They are also urged, if possible, to organize projects or charity drives – for example, to…

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  • Phuket NewsKrung Thai Bank to open new branch | Thaiger

    Krung Thai Bank to open new branch

    PHUKET TOWN: Krung Thai Bank will open a new branch in town on Monday, August 16, on Phang Nga Rd, close to the Royal Phuket City Hotel. The branch, in a building that was completed about 18 months ago, (but which has remained empty since), will replace the old Krung Thai office at the junction of Phang Nga Rd and…

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  • Phuket NewsThree women arrested for selling “yaba’ | Thaiger

    Three women arrested for selling “yaba’

    PHUKET TOWN: On Sunday, narcotics police arrested three women from Phetburi in two separate raids for trafficking in amphetamines (yaba). The first raid came after undercover investigations revealed that yaba was for sale in the Talad Yai, Phuket Town’s central market, on Ranong Rd. During surveillance, they arrested a 19-year-old woman for possession of two pills. After questioning her, they…

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  • Phuket NewsUnidentified bodies washed up on Patong Beach | Thaiger

    Unidentified bodies washed up on Patong Beach

    PATONG: Kathu Police have appealed for help in identifying two men found dead on Patong Beach last weekend. The first was found early on Saturday morning in front of Kamonland, a cabana hotel. Police said the man was about 45 to 50 years old, wearing violet shorts and a green T-shirt inside a long-sleeved grey shirt. An autopsy showed the…

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  • Phuket NewsThree arrested for theft from hotel rooms | Thaiger

    Three arrested for theft from hotel rooms

    PHUKET TOWN: Police yesterday arrested three Malaysians they believe are responsible for a spate of thefts from hotel rooms. The arrests came after a complaint from a guest at the Thavorn Grand Plaza Hotel that he had gone to bed on Thursday night and had woken the following morning to find his Solvil & Titus watch missing, along with 3,200…

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  • Phuket NewsWork may be fruitless for Phuketians in Sweden | Thaiger

    Work may be fruitless for Phuketians in Sweden

    PHUKET: People tempted by offers of jobs picking fruit in Sweden have been warned by the Phuket Provincial Employment Office to check very carefully that the offer is genuine. The office pointed out that this year’s fruit harvest in Sweden is not particularly good, so demand for foreign workers is not high. But confidence tricksters working in Phuket have been…

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  • Phuket NewsPhuket tops Dengue fever league | Thaiger

    Phuket tops Dengue fever league

    PHUKET TOWN: The Phuket Health Office recorded 148 cases of Dengue fever between the beginning of the year and July 23, said its director, Dr Boonrieng Chuchaisangrat, in a report issued yesterday. There were no deaths. The figure means that with an infection rate of 63.9 per 100,000 inhabitants, Phuket remains at the top of the Dengue fever league table…

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  • Phuket NewsTuk-tuk drivers in protest over access to port | Thaiger

    Tuk-tuk drivers in protest over access to port

    AO MAKHAM: About 40 tuk tuk drivers from Phuket Town gathered in front of the gates of the deep-sea port this morning in protest at the apparent unwillingness of port authorities to allow them inside to pick up some of the 4,000 American sailors disembarking at the port on Monday. Asin Arammethappongsa, manager of the port, told the Gazette that…

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  • Phuket NewsAmerican believed murdered in Bangkok | Thaiger

    American believed murdered in Bangkok

    BANGKOK, Aug 4 (AFP) – An American found dead in a central Bangkok hotel room with a plastic bag covering his head was believed to have been murdered, police said this morning. Wayne Tischbern, 58, was found yesterday when hotel staff informed police that he had spent an unusually long time in his room. Tischbern was handcuffed, there was tape…

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  • Phuket NewsPhuket hosts colony of robber crabs | Thaiger

    Phuket hosts colony of robber crabs

    PHUKET: Following considerable excitement in Thai national newspapers about the discovery in Bangkok of a robber crab, or coconut crab – thought to be extinct in Thailand – the Phuket Marine Biological Center has revealed that it has a colony of 20 or so of the giant land-based crustaceons. The crabs are not on view to the public because the…

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