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Crackdown on illegal loan sharks called for

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PHUKET: A Rassada Municipality council member called for a crackdown on loan sharks after his brother was attacked and brutally beaten by a group of armed men he claims were hired by illegal moneylenders.

Rassada Municipality council member Chainarong Pillavas and his brother Suthipong Pillavas, who claims to have been attacked by some 20 thugs hired by the loanshark, made a direct plea to the police during a press conference at Bangkok Hospital Phuket last Thursday.

“There are a lot of loan shark gangs in Phuket. They have no issue with physically attacking debtors; it doesn’t matter if they are children or elderly people. I would like police to put a stop to this,” said Mr Chainarong, who was a policeman himself before getting into politics years ago.

Mr Chainarong’s younger brother, Mr Suthipong, described the attack:

“On Wednesday night, at around 8pm, I was sitting in my shipyard in Phuket Town. Four bag men came to collect the interest on a 30,000 baht loan taken out by one of my former employees. These are the kind of loan sharks that offer desperate people high-interest loans. They threaten violence against those who fail to pay off their debts or keep up the interest payments,” he said.

“I asked them to postpone the worker’s payment because he had resigned, which made them furious.

“The gang left, but returned with more men, about 20 in total. They had guns and knives and sticks; they attacked me.

“Two men pointed guns at my head, while others hit me with wooden sticks and cut my chest and kicked me until I passed out. Then they were all gone.”

A complaint was filed with the Phuket City Police by his brother Chainarong, who held the rank of Senior Sgt Maj when he left the Phuket City Police force.

“I wasn’t even the one who had borrowed the money, but I am the one who was attacked,” said Mr Suthipong, who admitted that he had vouched for the employee in question.

— Kritsada Mueanhawong

 

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