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41 year old Singaporean arrested following Scoot bomb hoax

The Thaiger & The Nation

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41 year old Singaporean arrested following Scoot bomb hoax | The Thaiger

PHOTO: Kevin Lim

A 41 year old man has been arrested for making a false bomb threat on board a Scoot flight from Singapore to Hat Yai, Songkhla, which resulted in the plane returning to Changi Airport.

Flight TR634, which left Changi Airport at 1.20pm on Thursday (April 5), was escorted back by two Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) F-15SG jets. This is protocol for such incidents according to The Straits Times.

The flight landed without incident at 3.23pm. A Scoot spokesman said the aircraft was carrying 173 passengers and six crew members. The police say preliminary investigations indicated that the suspect claimed he had a bomb in his carry-on baggage to a member of the flight crew. The pilot then decided to turn the plane back to Singapore.

A thorough security search was carried out on board the plane and the baggage of the suspect and his two travelling companions was examined. But no suspicious articles were found.

The Straits Times understands that the suspect is Singaporean. He was arrested under Regulation 8(1) of the United Nations (Anti-Terrorism Measures) Regulations, which states that it is an offence for a person to make false claims that a terrorist act has been, is being or will be carried out. Those found guilty can be punished with a fine not exceeding $500,000 or with imprisonment for a term not exceeding 10 years, or both.

The bogus bomb threat caused delays to passengers both in Singapore and Hat Yai.
Passengers on Flight TR634 bound for Hat Yai were finally able to depart again at about 6.30pm after the aircraft was declared safe after investigations and associated procedures were concluded.

An 18 year old student Daryl Koh was in Hat Yai waiting to board the return Scoot flight back to Singapore. He says passengers were initially told that the delay was due to technical issues.

“We didn’t expect a flight delay, and certainly not a bomb threat.”

In a Facebook post, Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen said that the two RSAF fighter jets took off within minutes after they were scrambled. Dr Ng added that RSAF pilots are on standby round the clock, and that “every threat is considered real until proven otherwise”.

This is the second such threat against a Singapore carrier in recent weeks. Last month, a Singapore Airlines flight from Taipei to Singapore was delayed after a woman called the Taipei police hotline from a payphone, claiming there was a bomb on Flight SQ879. The plane took off 25 minutes late after the threat was confirmed as a hoax.

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Phuket

Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: / Rawai Rescue workers / Phuket Tourist Police

The Phuket Tourist Police have been notified that a tourist had jumped from a building in Rawai and ended up on a steel awning covering the bottom floor today. But that wasn’t, in fact, what had happened.

The local Tourist Police say the owner of the building told staff at the Tourist Assistance Centre that the tourist had checked into the room on February 13.

The tourist didn’t actually jump down from the building but had moved a mattress from his room on to the awning and slept on it (mosquitos!!) He was also drunk and damaged some property inside the room.

The man is a 37 year old Estonian tourist. He was staying at the room with a 25 year old male friend.

Chalong Police have charged them both with being drunk and damaging property. They have said that they will pay for all damages to the owner of the property. They are heading back home on February 26.

Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The ThaigerPhuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger

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Business

Thai exports fall 5.7 percent in January, year-on-year

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Thai exports fall 5.7 percent in January, year-on-year | The Thaiger

Thai export results have dipped for the third straight month, falling more than 5.65% compared to a year earlier. The fall was a lot bigger than expected, according to the Thai commerce ministry.

Shipments contracted 1.72% in December, compared to a year earlier as well.

January’s export drop was due to falling shipments of rice, gold, electronics and cars, according to the ministry. Digging into the numbers, exports to the US rose 8.3% in the first month of the year, compared to January 2018, but exports to China slumped 16.7%.

The strong Thai baht, Asia’s best performing currency this year, has increasingly hit exports, particularly rice orders.

Checking imports for the same period, and the numbers jumped surprisingly 13.99% year on year, after sliding 8.15% in December 2018. Analysts say the surge in imports was partly due to imports of arms and military weapons.

There was a trade deficit of $4.03 billion in January, compared with a forecast surplus of $320 million surplus. December 2018 had a $1.06 billion surplus.

But the ministry says they are still forecasting export growth of 8% for 2019 after a 6.7% increase last year.

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Chiang Mai

American backpacker refuses to pay for girl he brought back to hostel, punches staff

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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American backpacker refuses to pay for girl he brought back to hostel, punches staff | The Thaiger

An American backpacker tourist, visiting Chiang Mai, had to be restrained after getting into a squabble with hostel staff after being asked to leave the premises.

The video of the altercation was shared on Reddit by ‘EatPrayFart’.

Following a night out, the backpacker brought a girl back to the mixed dorm room that he shared with nine other people. The report alleges the two had sex and were making a lot of noise.

The following morning the man was asked to leave the premises for breaking hostel rules. The staff also demanded he pay 200 baht for allowing the girl to stay in the dorm with him.

The man refused to pay and a fight followed, caught on camera, in the reception of the hostel.

In the footage the American man can be seen punching a member of the hostel staff before being restrained by another man. Some comments in the original post say that the man was also asked to leave by some of the other people staying in the dorm.

The report suggests the man was later taken into custody by Chiang Mai police.

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