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Police in Chon Buri announce crackdown on loan sharks

Jack Burton

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Police in Chon Buri announce crackdown on loan sharks | Thaiger
PHOTOS: The Pattaya News

Police in the eastern Chon Buri province held a large rally to announce a crackdown on loan sharks, in which they’ve already seized luxury cars, motorbikes, illegal weapons and ammunition. On Thursday, 709 police, led by the Chon Buri provincial police commander, attended a rally at the Bali Hai Pier in Pattaya to report on the ongoing crackdown.

Earlier in the week, Chon Buri police investigated a loan shark group who have reportedly been preying on those in financial trouble due to the Covid-19 crisis, offering loans at interest rates that violate Thai law, certainly extortionate rates. The gang allegedly found their victims via Facebook and other social media. Victims pawned their cars and motorbikes as collateral and the loan sharks charged them usurous interest rates, according to police at the rally.

Authorities arrested 3 prominent members of the gang after an investigation involving undercover agents. They reportedly seized 18 luxury cars and 10 motorbikes. The total value of the seized vehicles was estimated at about 20 million baht. Police say they’re working on identifying the victims to return their property.

Police in Chon Buri announce crackdown on loan sharks | News by Thaiger Police in Chon Buri announce crackdown on loan sharks | News by Thaiger Police in Chon Buri announce crackdown on loan sharks | News by Thaiger

SOURCE: The Pattaya News

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3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Saturday, August 8, 2020 at 5:07 pm

    Well they might as well go after people that have something to confiscate.
    It is a waste of time going after the Pattaya homeless.

  2. Avatar

    Rinky Stingpiece

    Saturday, August 8, 2020 at 6:03 pm

    This is one of SEAsia’s real problems, so many people go into debt via different routes, and it forms part of the organised crime web. You can certainly find articles about “debt collectors” in Indonesia online, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see similar things in other ASEAN countries, although as the photo indicates, some countries in SEAsia have easier access to firearms than others. Philippines has plenty; Indonesia is much more of a machete culture, due to lack of access.

  3. Avatar

    James Pate

    Sunday, August 9, 2020 at 3:52 am

    Announce a crackdown? ??? What a thoughtful heads up.

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Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

Thailand

Thai monk beheads himself with guillotine in attempt to reach nirvana, followers could face charges

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Thai monk beheads himself with guillotine in attempt to reach nirvana, followers could face charges | Thaiger

A monk, apparently ‘seeking nirvana’, has beheaded himself with a handmade guillotine in the northeastern province of Nong Bua Lamphu. Police are now investigating to determine if any of the monk’s followers should be charged for helping the abbot with his untidy path to enlightenment.

The monk, Dhammakorn Wangphrecha, reportedly spent 5 years planning his death and believed it would help him reach nirvana, his followers say. They say he decided to die last Thursday, on his 68th birthday. The guillotine was made with a metre-long blade and 2 buckets of cement held up by rope. It was placed near a statue of a beheaded deity. Followers say the monk cut the ropes himself.

While police say evidence say it’s a case of suicide, followers who moved Dhammakorn’s body could face charges for concealing a corpse. The guillotine had also been disassembled when police arrived, and followers could face other charges for tampering with evidence. If police discover that followers helped the monk build the guillotine, they could be charged with conspiracy to commit murder.

Police found the monk’s body in a wooden coffin at the Wat Phuhingong Monastery. They say around 300 people attended the monk’s funeral just hours after his death. Police did not say how many followers are now suspects in the investigation.

PM Prayut Chan-o-cha spoke after the death of the monk, warning Thais not to put too much faith in superstition, and psychiatrists visited the monastery to do mental health checks.

“I ask you to not put too much faith in something unscientific, as the Buddha taught that his words can be proved… Everybody must have some logic to believing or respecting something. I don’t think anybody wants to imitate.”

SOURCE: Coconuts Bangkok

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Crime

UPDATED: 1.1 million baht of gold necklaces stolen in Hat Yai

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UPDATED: 1.1 million baht of gold necklaces stolen in Hat Yai | Thaiger
FILE PHOTO: Police investigate the site of a gold robbery in Hat Yai

UPDATE:

A man is now in custody for the robbery of 1.1 million baht worth of gold necklaces in Hat Yai yesterday morning. Pvt Ukrit Thongsomsri, a 24 year old naval deserter from the Songkla naval bank was identified and taken into custody at a house in tambon Khuan Lang in Hat Yai. The man allegedly confessed and showed police where he had buried a bag containing the necklaces. Only 10 of the 14 missing necklaces were recovered though, so police continue to search for the missing 4. The car used in the robbery was also recovered as well as the camouflage trousers he threw from the car while fleeing, which were found on the side of the road. A press conference is expected to share more details.

 

ORIGINAL STORY:

An armed and masked man stole gold necklaces valued at 1.1 million baht from a Big C shopping mall in Hat Yai Saturday afternoon. Police are searching now for the suspect and his accomplice who drove a getaway car. The robbery took place at the Yaowarat Bangkok gold shop around 3:30 pm on the upper level of the Khlong Hae branch of the international supermarket chain Big C.

Early police reports indicate that the 2 men involved in the robbery arrive in a bronze-coloured Toyota Vios with the license plates removed. They parked at the mall entrance and one man entered Big C and went to the gold shop. At the time three women and a man were on shift at the gold shop.

The thief pretended to be a customer and requested to look at expensive gold necklaces. The staff opened the case to show him several necklaces when the man lunged across the counter and grabbed a handful of necklaces while pulling out a gun and threatening to shoot the staff members. The necklaces he grabbed were about 682 grammes of gold, worth about 1.1 million baht.

After snatching the gold, the man fled from Big C and jumped into the waiting getaway car. Security guards had attempted to stop the man as he raced out of the mall but the thief aimed his gun at them and threatened them. Songkla Police are reviewing security camera footage now to try to identify the thieves. The video showed the man dressed in camouflage trousers and a camouflage hat, a black jacket, dark glasses and a face mask. No further details have been released yet.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Crime

Burmese prisoners granted amnesty on first day of Myanmar’s New Year

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Burmese prisoners granted amnesty on first day of Myanmar’s New Year | Thaiger

Over 23,000 Burmese prisoners and student political activists are enjoying freedom after being released yesterday in an amnesty on the first day of the country’s Lunar New Year celebrations. The state-owned MRTV reported that 23,407 prisoners were released under sections of a penal code. In the Yangon region alone, over 800 prisoners were released, while Mandalay saw around 2,800 released from 5 prisons.

But, with the recent military crackdown on protesters and civilians, the law’s ambiguity may be used against those released. As the law allows for the conditional release of prisoners, that means authorities can re-arrest the prisoners without warrant at any time.

Zayyar Lwin, Paing Ye Thu and Paing Phyo Min were among the released student political activists. The 3 were arrested for writing political Thingyan poems and rhymes. They were arrested under Section 505(a) of the penal code and Section 66(d) of the Telecommunications Law, both of which are regarded by many as draconian tools to oppress dissent.

The junta-led State Administration Council also issued a statement releasing 130 foreign prisoners under the same conditions. There have been 2 other mass releases since the coup. The first was in mid-February, which rights groups feared was a move to free up space for military opponents, and the second on the eve of Armed Forces Day when the regime released around 900 detained demonstrators.

But prisons continue to fill up as more than 3,100 people, mostly anti-coup protesters have been detained. The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners has been keeping track of detainees as well as injuries and deaths allegedly at the hands of the junta. It is stil unclear, however, if those released yesterday were post-coup detainees.

Meanwhile, the Burmese military leader, Gen Min Aung Hlaing, is expected to attend an ASEAN summit in Jakarta where representatives of the bloc are expected to discuss Myanmar’s situation. Thailand’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, Tanee Sangrat, made the announcement.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

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