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Pattaya banker detained on theft charges, allegedly defrauded local expats in investment scam

Caitlin Ashworth

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PHOTO: MGR Online

Pattaya police detained a former assistant manager of a local bank branch after he allegedly scammed numerous foreigners, tricking some of them into investments that led to significant losses and using invalid documents to fake transactions.

A group of foreigners filed a complaint with the Pattaya City Police against the bank branch’s former assistant manager Chaisit Sappermphool on fraud charges. The damages are estimated to cost tens of millions of baht.

Police say the bank has also filed a complaint against Chaisit on theft charges after he allegedly used outdated passbooks and documents that were no longer valid and required to be destroyed. The Pattaya police chief says Chaisit is now detained at Pattaya Court and a request for bail was rejected.

For several years, Chaisit helped the expats make deposits to their retirement funds and other services like passbook updates, according to the complaint. Recently, when updating their passbooks at other branches, some noticed their balances didn’t match what was printed in their passbooks. According to the complaint, the customers were told their transfer slips were outdated and no longer valid.

A 49 year old expat and longtime Pattaya resident told The Thaiger that he visited a Kasikorn bank branch in Pattaya on Sunday for his monthly rolling over of funds and discovered he had lost 250,000 baht. He claims the bank branch’s assistant manager promised investors 3.5% interest per month for cash investments.

“It all seemed so legitimate and I saw many people coming and going at the end of each month, some bringing in bags of cash to invest into the scheme.”

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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24 Comments

24 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Stardust

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 1:47 pm

    And Kasikorn pay for the damage? Kasikorn is responsible for their customers and their security!

  2. Avatar

    Maag

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 2:14 pm

    Welcome in scam-e-land !

  3. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 3:17 pm

    Is there no Thai you can trust in Thailand?
    Don’t answer that – NONE.
    Members of this forum might think I am hard on the Thais, but just observe this weekly examples of Thais scams and frauds.
    Note the scandal of charging foreigners more than the Thais, which has been going on for years, and they do this in many cases by tricks.
    They display the Thai price in Thai, or do not display the Thai prices at all!

    • Avatar

      gosport

      Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 3:26 pm

      This week scam shows how greedy of those investors, Farangs or non farangs. Those greedies only can play cards on grass mat on pavement. Greed pushed them to play big, then lost big. They will complain that the manager speaks Thai they don’t understand. Go home, bet on mat.

    • Avatar

      Mr cynic

      Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 4:19 pm

      An element of being blinded by greed is required for this type of scam to work.seeing as the police have the front man in custody it should be possible to trace the majority of the funds and return it to the the victims fairly quickly.the interest rate offered should have been a huge red flag to anybody.

    • Avatar

      Maag

      Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 6:08 pm

      Can not even trust all farang , especialy in pattaya or phuket….a bunch of gold diggers !

  4. Avatar

    Andy

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 3:35 pm

    Surprise surprise Isan John is Not defending the scam.

    • Avatar

      Toby Andrews

      Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 4:06 pm

      Give him time he will be scanning the Web at this moment trying to find a similar example in the West.
      So he can write: Ah but in 1956 in New York City . . .

      • Avatar

        Gosport

        Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 5:15 pm

        It still happens in 2035 New York

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 8:11 pm

      Why would I? Carrot and stick, criticise what’s wrong, defend what’s right.

      • Avatar

        James R

        Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 1:57 am

        Issan John

        But you do not seem to know what is right or wrong, last week you said the UK is not making any of the virus vaccines when in fact three companies are making it in the UK and another is making the vials and filling them.

        You do not know what day of the week it is.

  5. Avatar

    Kim

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 3:37 pm

    im quite sure there are more than a handful of foreigners who will agree with toby. one developer in phuket scammed billions from foreigners, when they thought they bought their dream home on jumeirah private island off phuket.

  6. Avatar

    Pieter Wilhelm

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 3:38 pm

    The corrupt assistant bank manager allegedly used outdated passbooks and documents that were no longer valid and required to be destroyed.

    When a bank customer is handed over an updated passbook by a assistant bank manager of a well known and respected bank how is the customer supposed to know that these are outdated and fraudulent passbooks?

    The high interest should be a red flag though.

  7. Avatar

    Craig

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 3:43 pm

    “It all seemed so legitimate…”. Stupid people got scammed. It’s the same wherever you go. If you got money and others don’t, be careful. Don’t fall for scams like the above. Duh.

  8. Avatar

    James Pate

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 5:56 pm

    The sound you hear is me playing world’s saddest song on the world’s smallest violen for these fools.

  9. Avatar

    Paul Revere

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 6:01 pm

    There’s a sucker born every minute! In the Philippines about 10 years ago, I was watching the band in a nice restaurant and was approached by an older Pinay who was offering an “investment opportunity.” Right away I smelled scam 1) because I’m in a pub 2) her brochures were cheap photocopies and 3) the high ROI. “All the foreigners here are investing” she bleated! Unfortunately, many expats fell for it and lost their investment money, one poor Brit lost his life savings. Last I’d heard they were paying cash to attend meetings with the government about how they were going to get their money back. Never heard if they were successful.

  10. Avatar

    Social Observer

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 7:50 pm

    Where did all that money go ? Surely that crooked manager did not spend all of that. Some or most of that money must be somewhere. The victims should be able to recover some or most of their “lost” money.

  11. Avatar

    Ben

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 7:52 pm

    This type of scam is one of the oldest around and happens all over the world every day. The people scammed didn’t have any financial sophistication or they would have known 3.5% monthly risk free doesn’t exist especially with rates near zero around the world. 3.5% compounded monthly equals a 51.1% annual return. GREED did these people in.

    As the old saying goes: If it’s sounds to good to be true then it is.

    • Avatar

      Frank

      Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 8:19 pm

      Yes exactly what I wanted to write.. to good to be true… blind because greedy.. your own fault bad for the people but hope they learned something…

  12. Avatar

    Philippe

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 9:11 pm

    Don’t invest in anything here. Whatever you as farang are, expat, tourist,even worker Just consider this country as a spending yard. Do your investments in reliable countries and certainly not in a corrupt, lawless, junta, dictatorially ruled environment.

  13. Avatar

    H.C. Loos

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 9:14 pm

    and the bank of course knew nothing??? the guy was not the parking clerk, but the Assistant Manager with an office in the bank.Kasikorn has failed its obligation to supervise and control a top level employee. Kasikorn should be sued and pay the damages. Kasikorn customers, how small their account would be should vote with their feed and pull every Baht out of Kasikorn

  14. Avatar

    EdwardV

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 11:13 pm

    I never feel bad over greedy people being scammed. An old pensioner who is conned by an unscrupulous contractor or repair man, yes. People who throw caution to the wind chasing a clearly unrealistic rate of return, no. All of that aside, I would find it difficult to see how the bank isn’t responsible. After all it was done by their employee, during bank hours at the actual bank. Then again this is Thailand so all bets are off.

  15. Avatar

    James R

    Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 1:51 am

    Scams happen in every country in the world.

    The gullible and greedy live in every country in the world.

    Hence scams are successful to a certain point.

    Someone I know said he had invested a few thousand dollars in a bank in South America as it was offering 10% a year, I said that is far too much and is a scam, he asked me to invest, I said no of course not as it is a scam, two years later he had lost all of his money.

    In the case of the people above, it is so easy to go to an ATM machine and have your pass book updated by the machine, you push it into a slot and you instantly know the facts.

  16. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 11:31 am

    The cop’s saying to them: “You see you ferangs are still wearing short pants, that is why the Thais think you are children, and as smart as children. That’s why they scam you.”

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Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

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