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Facebook page advocates violence against ‘shit tourists’ in Phuket

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Facebook page advocates violence against ‘shit tourists’ in Phuket | The Thaiger
Spotlight Thailand
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Following up from yesterday’s report there has been no action taken to remove a Facebook page advocating violence against “shit tourists” stranded in Phuket. ‘Spotlight Thailand’, usually a ‘whistleblower’ for local corruption and fuelled by the admin’s political views, has nearly 600,000 followers.

Now this week’s posts are going viral, spreading a disturbing message from local Phuket ‘vigilantes’, commenting about the original post, that is likely do irreparable harm to the holiday island’s reputation as a safe place to visit in the future. The posts advocate violence against tourists, the ones still stuck on the island, who have been venturing out during curfews or not wearing face masks, and asks followers to take matters into their hands. The thrust of the campaign is that the tourists are ‘partying’ whilst the local Thais suffer.

The posts, perhaps intended as a bad joke, incites local Thais, disgruntled with losing their jobs and being cooped up during curfew hours, to take matters into their own hands and use a slingshot and rocks to ‘pick off’ tourists if seen outdoors.

The disturbing posts, shared and liked thousands of times, started on Monday. The Facebook page posted photos of ‘farang’ tourists driving around or visiting Phuket locations in a ‘shame file’, and calling the page’s followers to shoot them with slingshots.

Followers responded with photos, armed and ready with their own slingshots. There was also, mostly, overwhelming support in the comments under the posts, for the direct citizen action. There were also many detractors of the posts, deriding the author’s and their vivid images of people with slingshots.

The general theme of the comments is that ‘white’ or ‘farang’ tourists are responsible for bringing the Covid-19 scourge to Thailand and, therefore, responsible for the economic pain and hardships they are enduring.

This makes me pity myself and my eight employees. We’ve been indoors since March 18, none of us going outside except to get supplies for the 9 of us at Makro. We run a massage shop at Patong, Meanwhile the tourists are having fun.”

Facebook page advocates violence against 'shit tourists' in Phuket | News by The ThaigerFacebook page advocates violence against 'shit tourists' in Phuket | News by The Thaiger

Complaints have been made about the page’s posts to local consulates, the Phuket Governor, and copies of the posts sent to police and government officials in Bangkok. The Thaiger has received hundreds of messages from concerned local expats and worried tourists who have ended up stranded on the island.

One local hotelier called The Thaiger and said that the few tourists they have left at their resort (who were resident before the order to close Phuket’s hotels) said they were “very worried” and were astonished that the locals would want to fire rocks at them.

A consular official contacted us and confirmed they had made representations to Phuket’s Governor about the posts.

The localised outrage and suspicion against ‘farang’ (caucasian westerners) comes weeks after Thailand’s Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, was captured on video threatening to kick out “damn farangs” for not wearing facemasks (when offered to them at a PR event at the Siam BTS station in Bangkok).

He later described Western tourists as “dirty”, asserting that they “never showered” on Twitter. The tweets were deleted but not before they had been shared thousands of times and reported in media around the world.

Thailand, like every other country at the moment, is on ‘pause’ as it battles the Covid-19 gremlins but, at some stage, will re-open and want to welcome back tourists. Tourism accounts for up to 17% of Thailand’s GDP. In places like Pattaya and Phuket, it’s almost the sole driver of the local economies.

These posts, and the simmering anti-foreigner tone, calling on public outbursts of vigilantism, whether intended as a joke or not, will do little to help attract the tourists back to places like Phuket that survive on tourist patronage, and their dollars.

The Thaiger has reached out to the person behind the posts (we’ve interviewed him in the past) but have not yet had a response to our requests for comment.

Facebook page advocates violence against 'shit tourists' in Phuket | News by The Thaiger

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Avatar

    ex-expat

    April 8, 2020 at 4:07 pm

    Not all, but the majority of generally racist, fact. What other country regularly targets minorities for persecution as much? One year the Thai authorities target the blacks in Bangkok, the following year the Arabs! Any farangs that have spent a lot of time in Thailand know the smiles are usually fake, and used as a tool to part stupid inferior farangs from their money. They tolerate us purely because they need our money. Ironically , if all the faring left Thailand, the country would fall apart.

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Crime

Despite vindication, “Rolex General” is back in the hot seat

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Despite vindication, “Rolex General” is back in the hot seat | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Chiang Rai Times

Deputy PM Prawit Wongsuwon, dubbed “The Rolex General” after a scandal over luxury watches, is once again in the spotlight.

Thailand’s National Anti-Corruption Commission has been criticised for subverting the system of checks and balances of politicians and high ranking officials. Its explanation about Prawit’ “borrowed” luxury watches has drawn scrutiny and criticism.

The explanation came in a letter dated Monday and sent by the NACC to an opposition politician, 17 months after he wrote to them.

A member of the opposition Pheu Thai Party asked the NACC on January 3, 2019 to explain why it didn’t find Prawit guilty of failing to declare 22 luxury watches, which he claimed to have “borrowed from a friend” who later died. The original ruling was made on December 26, 2018.

The party member publicised the letter widely, signed by the acting NACC secretary-general, and it has been widely shared online. The letter says the NACC commissioners acknowledged that a Pattawat Suksriwong was the actual owner of the luxury watches and had lent them to Prawit. It also confirmed that Prawit had returned the watches, worth tens of millions of baht, to Pattawat after using them.

“The borrowing is a ‘loan for use’. While a loan for use is a liability, it is not the type the NAAC requires to be declared in its asset declaration form.”

“The NACC’s definition of liabilities only covers money, not loans for use, in which the assets have been returned to the lenders in their original form, with no money involved.”

“Therefore, General Prawit is not obliged to declare the borrowed watches as liabilities in his asset declaration form.”

A former finance minister posted on Facebook that the interpretation of “liabilities” by the incumbent commissioners runs against common sense. A prevailing interpretation of liabilities is anything of monetary value, not a case where real money is involved.

“For the sake of transparency,” he urged the NACC to list cases in which it had convicted or acquitted people in the past for the same reason, how it interpreted each of those cases and whether those interpretations were in line with its the letter to the Pheu Thai member.

A law professor, former MP from the now-dissolved Future Forward Party and leader of the Progressive Movement, wrote on Facebook that such an interpretation opens the door for widespread asset concealment.

“The NACC’s interpretation destroys the checks and balances of politicians and government officials and renders useless the requirement that they declare assets and liabilities,”

He says that from now on, any politician or official who wants to hide his assets can “borrow” using this “loan for use” trick. Assets such as accessories, rings, necklaces, watches and sports cars, need not be declared anymore.

“All you have to do is get a rich friend of yours to say it is their assets and then explain the properties were borrowed from him.”

In the past, politicians and officials often tried to avoid declaring assets by having other people, even their helpers, chauffeurs and close aides, listed as the owners.

“Yet the NACC tried hard to establish the real owners, deterring the practice.” The interpretation of the NACC today has given politicians and officials a new channel to hide their assets.”

“To protect the heart of the military regime, do we really need to trade it with the checks and balances we have so painstakingly built since 1997?”

Prawit was in the hot seat in 2017 after some media members spotted a US$370,000 (11.8 million baht) Richard Mille watch on his wrist in a photo taken at a ceremony for Cabinet ministers. Investigations of photos taken at other public events showed that he had worn at least 22 luxury watches worth a combined 40 million baht and expensive rings in public.

The watches and jewellery were not included in the asset declaration that Prawit filed with the NACC on in September 2014, after taking on the positions of deputy PM and Defence Minister.

Source: Chiang Rai Times |Bangkok Post

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Crime

14 million methamphetamine pills seized in massive Chiang Rai drug haul

Jack Burton

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14 million methamphetamine pills seized in massive Chiang Rai drug haul | The Thaiger
PHOTOS: Naew Na

Police in Chiang Mai have arrested 2 men and a woman in the province’s Fang district when they found 14 million methamphetamine pills, aka. “yaba”, in one of their 2 vehicles. Officers got a tip on Friday that drugs would be smuggled into the district and set up road checkpoints, according to the deputy national police spokesman.

At around 12:30am, officers spotted a suspicious pickup truck on the Fang bypass road. They followed the vehicle to a hotel in tambon San Sai. Officers checked with the hotel operator who told them that a woman had parked the pickup at the hotel and checked in. They went to her room to question her.

The woman, Phitsamon Samaknakhon, told them she drove the pickup, following another along the route. 2 men, Suthat Nonthong and Yodrak Klangna, boarded the vehicle and were staying in other rooms at the same hotel.

Officers found the 2 men inside their rooms and took all 3 suspects back to the pickup truck. When they opened the rear door of the pickup, they found 77 sacks containing 14 million speed pills inside. The trio were arrested and charged with possession of illicit drugs with intent to sell. They were taken to the Fang police station for questioning and pressing charges.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

14 million methamphetamine pills seized in massive Chiang Rai drug haul | News by The Thaiger

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Crime

Panthongtae Shinawatra is a free man after AG decides not to appeal acquittal

Jack Burton

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Panthongtae Shinawatra is a free man after AG decides not to appeal acquittal | The Thaiger
PHOTO MONTAGE: The Thai Examiner

Panthongtae “Oak” Shinawatra, son of former PM Thaksin Shinawatra, is a free man, after Thailand’s Attorney General decided to not appeal against his acquittal for alleged money laundering. He was charged by the Department of Special Investigations after 10 million baht was deposited into his bank account by an executive of the Krisdamahanakorn Group of real estate companies, which was granted a 10 billion baht loan by the state run Krung Thai Bank, despite the group’s poor financial standing.

The loan was later transferred to the accounts of companies affiliated with the Krisdamahanakorn Group and used to buy shares in Airports of Thailand Company, instead of being used to boost the financial status of Krisdamahanakorn Group.

The case dates back to 2004, when Thaksin was Thailand’s PM. Several executives of Krisdamahanakorn Group and Krung Thai Bank were given long prison terms in 2015, after being convicted of corruption and malfeasance by the Supreme Court’s Criminal Division for Political Office Holders.

After his acquittal, the public prosecutors decided to not appeal the verdict, thus clearing Panthongtae, but the DSI insisted on appealing to a higher court and the case went to the Attorney General, who has now brought this high-profile case to a close.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

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