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Koh Pha Ngan partygoers and organiser get a fine and suspended sentences



109 partygoers who attended a party at cliff-top bar on Koh Pha Ngan, including 89 foreigners and 22 Thais, have received suspended jail terms and fines for breaking Thailand’s emergency decree and Covid-19 restrictions. A judge sentenced each of the attendees to 1 month in jail, suspended if they have a good behaviour record for a year. He also fined them 4,000 baht each.

Police arrested most of the attendees in a raid Tuesday evening at the ThreeSixtyBar. Among the foreigners arrested were 20 French citizens, 10 Americans and 6 British citizens. Others were from Russia and Switzerland. Everyone was given a Covid-19 test by local health officials. So far all results have come back negative.

Koh Pha Ngan has been a popular destination in the past for backpackers, ‘wellness’ seekers, the hippie crowd and was famous for its monthly full moon party. But the Had Rin Beach monthly invasion has been cancelled since March 2020 although a core of international expats and tourists, some stuck in Thailand or waiting out the pandemic, have moved to the island for its relaxed tropical lifestyle. Thailand barred virtually all tourists from entering the country in April 2020 because of the coronavirus.

Koh Pha Ngan is a short boat ride from Koh Samui, located off the coast of Surat Thani province in the Gulf of Thailand.

Police said the raid was easy as the organisers did a lot of publicity (below) on social media for the Celebration 5 Bang party, where the bar promoted the event to celebrate its fifth year in business.

The court conducted the trial of the 109 people over a video conference call.

As for the Thai organiser and the 2 bartenders, they were given fines of 10,000 baht and a 2 year suspended jail sentence. The party’s organiser claimed he had made an “honest mistake”.

“I thought Surat Thani province was in the Covid-19 green zone…. I thought we were allowed to organise an activity.”

Thailand is currently graded in four zones – red, orange, yellow and green – depending on the number of cases in the current outbreak that has now spread around the country in the past 5 weeks, tripling the number of cases before December 20. Thailand has now registered 17,023 infections since January 2020, 802 new cases today and a total of 76 deaths.


Koh Pha Ngan partygoers and organiser get a fine and suspended sentences | News by Thaiger


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  1. Bill Fischer

    Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 8:27 am

    4,000 baht fine! That’s barely a slap on the wrist. This is a joke. They should have been fined heavily and deported.

    • Manu

      Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 12:05 pm

      Calm down Adolf, no harm has been done…

      • J West

        Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 3:44 pm

        Funny 5555…. “ Adolph”….. ?

        But, the club promoters did bring the police attention on themselves by advertising….. given the island Farang population is represented by the number of attendees. A note on a beach rock would have sufficed. And…. police are hard up for cash these days. Normally they’d likely been too busy making the rounds.

        • Manu

          Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 8:12 pm

          Just calm down the all lot of you… nobody died, life gets on just take it easy, . And IJ, you are nobody to suggest anything how law should be applied. Not even here on the Thaiger. Calm down please…”siuggest” only what your mad brain allows you to: nothing.

    • Issan John

      Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 4:04 pm

      I’d suggest the 10,000 baht fine and suspended sentences for the organisers is rather more significant (or insignificant).

      • Leo Z

        Sunday, January 31, 2021 at 11:47 pm

        Agreed with John. You want a penalty to act as a deterrent, 50,000-100,000 baht fine plus suspension of liquor license for a year should do it. “Honest mistake”?! You live and breathe emergency decree and zones if you’re a business owner. As far as the 89 foreigners (who just had to celebrate, didn’t they?), deportation cannot be done, but a 5-year blacklist could very easily have been slapped.

  2. Gold Sovereign

    Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 10:38 am

    Why? No positive tests for COVID-19. You seem too angry over something that would never hurt you nor is really any of your business.
    Remeber that this is on an island. These people are not travelling all over Thailand. So little opportunity for anything to spread. Calm down.

    • Issan John

      Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 8:32 pm

      So as long as no-one actually gets hurt it’s fine for people to break whatever laws they like ?

      Maybe that’s how the law works on your planet …

      • Manu

        Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 9:23 pm

        The real point being:: anyone dying? No? what we are we talking about then?

  3. Ray

    Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 5:30 pm

    I think the penalties are correct. Doesn’t matter whether there is no corona case on the island. The party goers and organizers give a wrong signal that people can decide for themselves to follow the rules or not.

    • Issan John

      Sunday, January 31, 2021 at 12:46 am

      I’d suggest the penalties, particularly for the organisers, gave a similar signal.

  4. Ynwaps

    Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 6:01 pm

    Look at us, we’re doing something in this otherwise poorly lead war against covid 😉

  5. Ton Bunchuai

    Sunday, January 31, 2021 at 7:52 am

    I recently commented on this topic and was “verbally abused” can you please request that people stick to the topic and not verbally abuse others !!

    • The Thaiger

      Sunday, January 31, 2021 at 12:13 pm

      We’re like a broken record on this matter Ton. Sometimes it’s not for the faint-hearted and we try and remove as much nonsense, false information and abuse as we can.

  6. Mitch

    Sunday, January 31, 2021 at 5:11 pm

    The obvious seems ignored here:
    – The police knew for at least a week about this event happening
    – Bigger parties took place that very same week in the same island
    – They had many many days to reach out to the organizer and cancel it
    – This would have been in the best public interest to avoid infection
    – Instead they “raid” the event to arrest people that, stupidly perhaps, thought they were within the law (green zone, legit ads online etc…)

    Conclusion: It could’ve been a non-incident, and yet it became a successful communication operation.
    I might add, the Thaiger may want to do a follow up article with the view of some of the infamous “Phangan 111” and ask why there were no pro active measures taken to prevent a “dangerous gathering”

    • Ynwaps

      Monday, February 1, 2021 at 2:19 pm

      Thank you Mitch. The Thaiger should follow up on this but it probably doesn’t fit the narrative.

      • The Thaiger

        Monday, February 1, 2021 at 2:43 pm

        There is zero narrative from us. We’ve just reported the news that we know. If there were other incidents they’ve snuck under the radar. We can only report what we know.

  7. Mary

    Monday, February 1, 2021 at 2:40 am

    Koh Phangan is half-jokingly referred to as “White Supremacy Island” and the Thai police are happy to capitalize on the wealthy Farang:

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