Thai restaurant owner loses 600,000 baht during family trip to France

Photo courtesy of KhaoSod

A 30 year old restaurant owner from Nonthaburi suffered a loss of over 600,000 baht during his recent family trip to France. He has shared his harrowing experience to alert others and prevent them from becoming victims.

Thalerngsak Khongkwanmuang revealed yesterday, December 12, his ordeal which occurred between November 7 and 21 during his holiday in France with his 48 year old mother and 53 year old aunt. On November 7, they were targeted by a group of criminals in Paris. While travelling on the underground train, the perpetrators targeted his mother who had her handbag in front of her. Due to the crowded nature of the train, the criminals managed to snatch her purse.

Subsequently, Thalerngsak reported the theft to the Paris police. It was discovered later that the mother’s credit card was used to purchase goods worth approximately 300,000 baht. He then immediately contacted the bank to cancel the credit card.

On November 10, the family was travelling by train to visit the Palace of Versailles. They changed to a weekly ticket but did not sign it. Four individuals, posing as police officers, checked their tickets and claimed that Thalerngsak was sitting rudely by putting his feet on the seat and that he did not sign the ticket. They were fined 500 euros.

Thalerngsak contacted the Thai embassy for advice. The embassy spoke to the supposed police officers and informed Thalerngsak that they were not actual officers. However, fearing for the safety of his mother and aunt, he negotiated and gave them 60 euros, which he claimed was all the money he had left.

On November 19, the family rented a car to visit Lyon. They parked their car about 100 metres away from a tourist spot. When they returned after visiting the petrol station, they discovered that their belongings, including branded bags, iPad, passports, important documents, and 200 euros in cash, were missing. The total value of the lost items was around 280,000 baht.

Financial loss warning

Thalerngsak contacted a Thai restaurant owner in Lyon who helped them report the incident to the police. They then obtained a police report to claim insurance. His mother and aunt returned to Thailand on November 21, while he remained to obtain a temporary passport. He eventually returned to Thailand the following day.

After returning to Thailand, Thalerngsak found out from his bank that his stolen credit card was used twice in the Netherlands, amounting to approximately 15,000 baht. He then cancelled the card. The total loss from the entire ordeal was roughly 600,000 baht, reported KhaoSod.

Thalerngsak advised travellers to be cautious and always ensure their safety. He suggested dressing modestly, keeping bags in front, and being vigilant. Valuables and branded items should not be brought along, and credit cards should be used sparingly. He also urged travellers to familiarise themselves with important contact numbers, such as the Thai embassy in the country they are visiting, for emergencies.

He shared his experience to help other Thai citizens who plan to travel abroad to be more cautious and aware, so as not to face similar incidents as his family did.

Central Thailand NewsCrime NewsThailand News

Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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