Pattaya City takes legal action against businesses for Koh Lan forest encroachment

Picture courtesy of opt-news

Legal action is being pursued by Pattaya City against businesses accused of encroaching on forest land on Koh Lan, confirms Deputy Mayor, Manote Nongyai. The city received information regarding the alleged encroachment near Sangwan Beach from a local non-profit organisation.

After conducting a survey, city officials confirmed that the encroachment had taken place with approximately 10 rai of forest land being cleared. As a result, Pattaya City has tasked its legal department with presenting the survey results to the Royal Forest Department for subsequent action.

The city authorities have escalated the matter by filing a legal complaint with local law enforcement against those parties suspected of the encroachment. They have also issued a cease and desist notice to the alleged offenders, reports Deputy Mayor Manote.

Koh Lan, an island located near Pattaya, is a magnet for tourists, particularly those from China, Russia, and India, attracting as many as 10,000 visitors daily, reported Bangkok Post.

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Manote highlighted that unauthorised land acquisition has been a prevailing issue on the island. The hunger for vast parcels of land for commercial development by tourism businesses has largely contributed to this problem. Despite being home to seven beaches, including Sangwan Beach, Manote stated that the island is grappling with overcrowding due to the high influx of tourists.

Adding to this, he noted that there has been a persistent challenge with the issuance of title deeds and other ownership documents.

The deputy mayor revealed that the residents of the Baan Koh Lan community, who earn their livelihoods through farming and fishing, also inhabit the area. However, many of these residents lack land ownership documents and have called for authorities to address this land ownership issue.

With the administration of the island recently transferred from the Chon Buri provincial office to Pattaya City, Manote stated that the city office is now mediating the land ownership dispute between the residents and the authorities.

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Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

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