Thai police bust suspects over Ponzi scheme of over 1 billion baht

Photo by Thai PBS.

Cyber Crime Investigation Bureau (CCIB) Pol. Col. Krisana Pattanacharoen reported a group of suspects involved in a Ponzi scheme was busted by Thai police. He added that over 1,000 individuals had invested more than 1 billion baht in the scheme.

The CCIB arrested seven people and seized several assets from two companies that allegedly operated a Ponzi scheme luring people to invest in mushroom, bee, and kratom farming, promising unrealistically high returns, Thai PBS reported today. The two companies are Mining Mine X Company, and Lak Si Station Limited Partnership.

Krisana said that between November 2021 and July 2022, the two companies set up several mushroom farms in the northeast Sakhon Nakhon province. They invited people to invest in their businesses in mushroom, bee, and kratom farming through advertising. The companies promised quick and high returns.

The companies recruited well-known personalities for their promotional campaign, which claimed that if someone invested 264,360 baht in mushroom farming, they would receive a dividend amounting to 108,640 baht in the third month. Alternatively, if they invested 275,000 baht in kratom farming, they would receive a dividend of 150,000 baht in the eighth month.

Over 1,000 people invested more than 1 billion baht in the businesses, which turned out to be a Ponzi scheme. The companies eventually began to default on paying the promised dividends, leading several investors to file complaints with the police.

Following the complaints, the CCIB launched an investigation and collected enough evidence to file charges of fraud, illegal lending, and violations of the computer crime law against nine executives, seeking warrants for their arrest. Seven of the suspects have been arrested while two remain at large.

Krisana said that he expects the CCIB to forward the cases to public prosecutors in April.

Northern Thailand News

Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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