Thai woman arrested in Chalong for bank scam involvement

Photo courtesy of Phuket News

A woman in Chalong has been arrested by the Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) for her involvement in a scam operation with the illegal creation of a false bank account.

Law enforcement officials apprehended Cantida at her residence in Chalong on Wednesday, July 3. The charges against her fall under the Computer Crimes Act, focusing on fraud by entering false data into a computer system. This practice, known as setting up mule accounts, is often used in scams to siphon money from unsuspecting victims.

Cantida claimed during questioning that she had been deceived by an acquaintance who tricked her into opening the bank account, which was subsequently used in an investment scam.

The scam was executed through the LINE messenger application, where fraudsters targeted victims and persuaded them to invest in what was presented as an easy money-making opportunity through online product advertising.

The CIB’s official report did not provide specific details about the fraud or the number of victims involved. However, it noted that the case is being investigated by a leading police station in Bangkok.

According to police, chief scammers typically offer mules between 500 and 1,000 baht for opening a fraudulent account, while the scammers themselves potentially rake in millions.

Even if Cantida’s claims of being deceived are true, she faces up to three years in prison for the offence of opening bank accounts for others, aside from the fraud charge. In addition to the Computer Crimes Act and relevant sections of the Criminal Code, Thailand’s Anti-Cybercrime Ordinance imposes strict penalties.

The 2023 decree outlines specific punishments for opening bank accounts and electronic wallets, as well as issuing SIM cards for third parties for illegal purposes. Offenders risk up to three years in prison and/or a fine of up to 300,000 baht.

Involving others in the issuance of SIM cards, electronic wallets, and/or bank accounts for illegal activities carries penalties ranging from two to five years in prison and/or fines between 200,000 and 500,000 baht.

Claiming ignorance of fraudulent activities does not exempt individuals from liability under the Computer Crimes Law and the Criminal Code’s fraud provisions, reported Phuket News.

Crime NewsPhuket 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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