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British tourist locked up in ‘horror’ prison, fellow inmate dies in his arms

The Thaiger

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British tourist locked up in ‘horror’ prison, fellow inmate dies in his arms | The Thaiger

PHOTO: mirror.co.uk

A British father of two has shared his horror story after being locked up in a Thai jail. Imprisoned for overstaying his visa, 35 year old Kai Isaacs claims a fellow inmate died in his arms following a brutal beating. The incident happened back on May 21 in the International Detention Centre, situated next door to the swanky Sathorn residential area in Bangkok.

Kai, from the Isle of Wight, was imprisoned with 150 other inmates at the IDC. He says he was locked up with gangsters and suspected terrorists, according to the article in the Mirror Online. He said all 150 inmates had to sleep on the floor, ten in a row.

“It was the worst three months of my life.

“In the IDC there were 150 people in the room, sleeping on the floor 10 in a row.”

“It was hot, it stank, it was noisy, it was violent and scary.”

Kai relates the story of an American who was singled out after he arrived at the IDC. Four days later he’d be dead…

“When this American lad, Rickey McDonald, came in they singled him out. They didn’t like the USA much. They picked on him from the minute he walked in the room. They beat him and beat him and beat him. He was bullied to the point he couldn’t get water. They gave you a three-litre bottle to fill up but the water was only on for an hour a day. If he stood up they hit him.”

“But the guy died in my arms . It was suspected heart failure. It was horrible and I was still in there for weeks after it happened.”

Rickey “Rick” Eric McDonald, 41, of Lexington, passed away May 21, 2019 in Bangkok, Thailand. A Lexington native, he was born on June 14, 1977. He was a graduate of Dunbar High School (’96) and attended St. Lawrence University, University of Copenhagen, and Georgetown University. He held a teaching certificate in English and was a published author. Rick enjoyed travel and traveled extensively throughout Europe and Asia – milwardfuneral.com

Kai has passed on his story to the FBI, who are investigating the death of the US citizen from Kentucky on May 21.

His problems started when he travelled to Thailand in August 2018 with a one-way flight to visit his girlfriend. He claims the cash he’d sent himself through MoneyGram was unable to redeemed when he arrived in Thailand. He was told somebody else had already withdrawn the cash.

With no cash for a return flight and only a 30 day visa, he ended up going to stay with friends and left it until March this year to contact the British Embassy in Thailand.

Kai claims the Embassy advised him to hand himself in and that he would be likely locked up in the International Detention Centre before being deported back to the UK. He was first detained in a ‘cage’ before his appearance in a Thai court.

“I was kept in a cell with around 50 Thai ­people in a cage for five days then taken to court.”

He told Mirror Online that all his possessions, and what little money he had, went ­missing while he was in the police cell.

“It’s an inhumane place. There are guards but there is a hierarchy among the inmates. The bosses were Iranian ­gangsters and regularly gave severe beatings. Every moment in there was horrific. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.”

Kai was finally deported in June this year with the help of the British Embassy and has now been barred from returning to Thailand for five years.

ORIGINAL STORY: mirror.co.uk

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Bangkok

Bangkok plummets in popularity with expats. Taipei heads the list.

The Thaiger

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Bangkok plummets in popularity with expats. Taipei heads the list. | The Thaiger

PHOTO: This year’s #1 city for expats – Taipei, Taiwan – Time Out

Bangkok has dropped from #5 (in 2018) to #20 this year in the annual Expat City Ranking.

But Asian cities continue to dominate the annual global Top 5 in the Expat City Ranking 2019. Italian cities Rome and Milan join Kuwait City at the bottom of this year’s rankings.

Taipei managed to defend its first place from last years list. Kuala Lumpur is rated the best city for getting settled and is second overall. Ho Chi Minh City ranks first in the Finance & Housing Index but third in the overall survey. Singapore and Montreal fill out the top five spots this year.

Bangkok experienced a significant drop compared to the 2018 edition of the list, where the Thai capital ranked 5th worldwide and 4th in Asia.

“Poor environmental management and horrendous traffic conditions eventually took a toll on Bangkok ratings.”

Bangkok, as an “expat-friendly city”, now faces fierce competition with Taipei, Kuala Lumpur and Ho Chi Minh City taking the lead ahead of the longtime favourite.

Ranking fifth out of all the cities surveyed in Asia, Bangkok ranks third in the Finance and Housing Index, but the Big Mango’s rankings were shot down by poor scores for environmental quality and political stability. 59% of the respondents in the survey say Bangkok’s environment is poor, and 36% worry about political stability.

Singapore’s fourth place further adds to Asian destinations dominating the Expat City Ranking 2019. The four top cities all do very well regarding finance and housing, with Singapore receiving the “worst” result here – a 15th rank mostly due to the expensive housing in the city-state.

Bangkok, the Thai capital, stays in the top 3 in the Finance & Housing Index for another year although the city has dropped from second place in 2018 to third place in 2019.

With regards to how easy it is to find housing in Bangkok, 80% of respondents give agreeable answers. The ease of finding a new, reasonably priced home appears to be an attractive aspect for expats moving to Bangkok; 58% of respondents find that the housing in the city is affordable.

With its second place in the Expat City Ranking 2019, Kuala Lumpur makes it into the global top 3 after consistently ranking among the top 10 cities in the past few years. Expats rate Kuala Lumpur as the city where it’s easiest to get settled, as well as one of the best cities worldwide when it comes to finance and housing.

Following a 4th place out of 72 cities in 2018, Ho Chi Minh City manages to further improve its result to rank 3rd out of 82 in 2019. Expats rate Vietnam’s most populous city as the best place for finance and housing, with the city ranking first for all but one of the underlying factors. HCMC places second regarding the affordability of housing.

In the Expat Insider 2019 survey, over 20,000 participants were asked not only to rate their respective host country but also to share insights regarding their city of residence. Respondents rated more than 25 different aspects of urban life abroad on a scale of one to seven, with the rating process emphasising expats’ personal satisfaction with these aspects.

SOURCE: Internations.org

Bangkok plummets in popularity with expats. Taipei heads the list. | News by The Thaiger

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Bangkok

Airport Link offers free rides on December 12 so people can watch the Royal Barge Procession

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Airport Link offers free rides on December 12 so people can watch the Royal Barge Procession | The Thaiger

PHOTO: royalcoastreview.com

Bangkok’s Airport Rail Link is offering free rides on December 12 to people heading to the shores of the Chao Phraya, and vantage points, to welcome His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn in the final act of the Royal Coromnation.

The Royal Barge Procession is the final ceremony of his coronation which was held earlier this year between May 4-6.

The procession, which has taken place for nearly 700 years, will proceed along Chao Phraya River with the government setting up spectator location along the banks for this rare spectacle.

Some of the locations along the river will include Thammasat University, Santichaiprakarn Park, Nakapirom Park, Siriraj Hospital, and Wat Rakhang Khositaram.

The State Railway of Thailand’s director-general, Suthep Panpeng says the Airport Rail Link, carrying passengers from Suvarnabhumi in the east to Phayathai in the centre of Bangkok, will offer free rides from 5.30am to midnight.

The free tickets will be available at all stations. It is envisaged that there will be other concessions and free transport available on the day to assist people getting around the city. The Thaiger will provide full information when it becomes available.

SOURCE: The Nation

Airport Link offers free rides on December 12 so people can watch the Royal Barge Procession | News by The Thaiger

The Airport Rail Link is the Red Line, carrying passengers from Suvarnabhumi in the east to Phayathai in the centre of Bangkok, linking to the Green Line.

Airport Link offers free rides on December 12 so people can watch the Royal Barge Procession | News by The Thaiger

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Thai King and Queen to open Chinatown exhibition this evening

The Thaiger

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Thai King and Queen to open Chinatown exhibition this evening | The Thaiger

PHOTO: South China Morning Post

HM The King and HM The Queen will tour Chinatown in Bangkok this evening to preside over the opening of the Chalerm Phrakiat exhibition. The exhibition showcases the biographies and Royal activities of previous monarchs of the Chakri dynasty (Ramas 1-10).

Their Majesties are scheduled to leave the Ampornpaisarn Throne Hall in the Dusit Palace at 4.50pm and head to Trai Mitr Withayaram Temple where they will preside over the opening of the new exhibition.

They will tour the exhibition grounds and watch a documentary featuring the Royal activities of the former kings of the Chakri dynasty in the exhibition’s ‘LED tunnel’. Then the Royal couple will visit the Thienfah Foundation Hospital to pay respects to the statue of the Chinese goddess Guan Yin before meeting the people, mostly Thais of Chinese descent, along the Suapa and Charoen Krung roads and at Mangkorn Kamalawas Temple.

Yaowarat Road has been beautifully decorated with lighting, symbolic flags in yellow and blue, with banners reading “Long Live the King” hung across the road, to welcome Their Majesties to Bangkok’s old Chinese community.

Mr. Jitti Tangsitpak, chairman of the Thai-Chinese chamber of commerce and chairman of the organising committee, said that officials are making the final touches to all the decorative arrangements to make sure they are perfect before the Royal visit.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

Thai King and Queen to open Chinatown exhibition this evening | News by The Thaiger

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