Pickpocketing pair pinched: Cambodian couple confesses to Bangkok crime spree

Photo via Facebook/ The Bangkok Times เดอะบางกอกไทม์

Police arrested a Cambodian couple for more than 100 pickpocketing offences in different areas of Bangkok. The Khmer couple confessed to their crimes and revealed that they had learned their dishonest skills from Vietnamese thieves in Thailand.

Pickpocketing complaints from both Thais and foreigners in various business districts of Bangkok, such as Sukhumvit, Nan, Silom, and Sathon, started pouring into the police. Victims reported thefts of both property and money. The most recent victim filed a complaint at Tung Mahamek Police Station on September 20, providing crucial information about the culprits. This information proved pivotal in the successful identification of the criminals.

As outlined in the police report, the pickpocketing gang comprised four Cambodian members who resided in rented rooms in Samut Prakan province, near Bangkok. They would typically convene at the Imperial Samrong shopping mall or the Bang Na intersection to strategize and then execute their thefts individually in different areas.

Operating in pairs, each member had a specific role to fulfil in the pickpocketing scheme. One member acted as a lookout, meticulously ensuring the absence of law enforcement or vigilant witnesses before discreetly signalling to their partner to pilfer the victims’ belongings. After obtaining the money, they would separately depart the scene using public transport.

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Police managed to locate and apprehend two members of the gang, identified as 43 year old Boon and 31 year old Chan. This couple consistently carried out their thefts as a team. Officers arrested them outside the Imperial Samrong shopping mall and subsequently conducted a search of their room.

Inside the room, officers discovered 30,000 baht in cash, mobile phones, gold rings, gold necklaces, valuable amulets, bank account information, and other valuable items, amounting to a total of 22 items.

The couple admitted to the crime. They explained that they had entered Thailand illegally earlier this year but had been unable to find legal employment. Due to unemployment, the two formed a criminal gang with his friend and urged a Vietnamese gang to teach them how to pickpocket.

The couple revealed that they would spend the money on gold necklaces and send the gold back to their families in their home country. They also confessed to robbing around three to four victims a day.

The couple is facing two charges, including:

  • Section 334 of the Criminal Law: stealing property of another person. The penalty is imprisonment for up to three years and a fine of up to 60,000 baht.
  • Section 81 of the Immigration Act: entering or staying in the Kingdom without permission or permission has expired. The penalty is imprisonment for up to two years and a fine of up to 20,000 baht.

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Petch Petpailin

Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger who focuses on translating breakingThai news stories into English. With a background in field journalism, Petch brings several years of experience to the English News desk at The Thaiger. Before joining The Thaiger, Petch worked as a content writer for several known blogging sites in Bangkok, including Happio and The Smart Local. Her articles have been syndicated by many big publishers in Thailand and internationally, including the Daily Mail, The Sun and the Bangkok Post. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp! But during office hours, you can find Petch on LinkedIn and you can reach her by email at petch@thethaiger.com.

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