Chinese begging gang suspect in Thailand nabbed after tip-off

Picture courtesy of KhaoSod

A man suspected to be part of a Chinese begging gang was pursued by Social media influencer Guntouch “Gun” Pongpaiboonwet following a tip-off. The suspect, who was spotted begging at a local market around 10am today, in the jurisdiction of Jorrake Noi Police Station, is one of many believed to be taking advantage of the free visa period for Chinese citizens.

The beggar was acting pitifully, pretending to be blind and unable to walk, behaviours identified as typical of the Chinese begging gang, of which six members have already been apprehended.

Gun received a tip from a fan who saw a man, with characteristics similar to those of the previously apprehended Chinese gang members, begging in the Jorrake Noi area. The man was acting pitifully, pretending to be blind and unable to walk, but upon confrontation, he quickly got up and walked away, proving he had no physical disability.

During his escape, he was seen talking on the phone before boarding a minibus. It is believed that the suspect had been begging for six hours and had collected around 10,000 baht (US$283).

Gun continued to say that there are claims that the Chinese beggars in Thailand are people whose passports have expired. However, upon checking, it was found that their passports were still valid and they arrived during the government’s free visa period for Chinese citizens, aimed at boosting the economy. This could be a loophole for criminal elements to enter Thailand, reported KhaoSod.

A 24 year old citizen, Cherinrada (surname withheld), who reported the tip-off, stated that she had encountered the man while shopping for fruit at the market. His appearance, scarred face and gnarled fingers reminded her of the Chinese begging gang that Kanthat was searching for.

Beggar’s belief

She messaged Gun’s page and sent a picture for verification. His team asked her to film the beggar again, but at that moment, a Grab driver in the area was asked to check if it was the same man, which it was. The beggar quickly got up and walked away.

Cherinrada added that she had seen this man begging for about two months, but not every day. The times she encountered him were in the evening. On the day she spotted him, she tried to observe and film him, which made him suspicious.

He put on a hat and walked away while talking on the phone, then boarded a minibus. She believed he noticed her watching him, as he acted as if he were blind and unable to walk when begging.

Cherinrada attempted to follow him to film, which allowed her to observe all his actions. He went into a convenience store and she asked people in the area, who said they saw a woman in a yellow shirt, who seemed to be connected to him, drop him off.

Thailand News

Nattapong Westwood

Nattapong Westwood is a Bangkok-born writer who is half Thai and half Aussie. He studied in an international school in Bangkok and then pursued journalism studies in Melbourne. Nattapong began his career as a freelance writer before joining Thaiger. His passion for news writing fuels his dedication to the craft, as he consistently strives to deliver engaging content to his audience.

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