Phuket police can’t catch foreigner stealing tourists’ credit cards for shopping sprees

A foreign man has made a habit of stealing credit cards from tourists in Phuket, southern Thailand, to go on expensive shopping sprees. He has managed to avoid arrest so far.

The same foreign man of unknown nationality is pickpocketing tourists in the Patong area of Phuket and using fake passports to make purchases of expensive items in bulk like gold and iPhones.

At one store, the thief bought 40 baht’s weight of pure gold and five of the latest iPhones at another store.

Police say he is an Asian man mostly using fake American passports. Usually, he wears a white cap, a black shoulder bag, and black trainers when he goes shopping. He wears a surgical mask to hide his face.

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Police advised shops in Phuket to always check that the name on the customer’s passport matches the name on the credit card and check that the signatures look the same.

Stores should ask customers for another document to verify their identity, such as a driver’s license, said police.

Police said that credit cards are usually linked to mobile phones and the customer should receive a notification upon making a purchase.

The Patong police even advised shop owners to probe buyers to find out where they are staying and then ring the accommodation to check they have provided the same phone number.

However, the Phuket police have not made any advancements in catching the fraudster as of yet.

Phuket police are under fire today after a Thai man alleged that they failed to investigate his little sister’s allegations against her Canadian boyfriend. She was found dead three days later.

A Canadian tourist who was violently mugged on Patong Beach on Friday alleges that a Patong police officer refused to help him.

Last week, officers at Phuket City Police Station shut down a cannabis shop for 30 days after bursting in on a game of poker – which is an illegal form of gambling in Thailand.

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Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.

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