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Phuket prisoners ready to break out the furniture



PHUKET: The annual fair for inmates to sell their wares made while serving their prison sentences will return to Phuket from June 3 to 12, Phuket Prison Chief Rapin Nichanon has announced.

Handmade products from 25 prisons throughout Thailand’s 14 southern provinces will be on sale at Saphan Hin in Phuket Town at the 8th annual Southern Prison Products Fair.

Products, made of wicker, bamboo and wood, include everything from small decorative items to living room furniture sets, dining room tables – and much more.

Prices range from 20 baht to 100,000 baht.

Half of the proceeds from sales go to the prisoners, who can use the money to cover expenses while in prison or to save for use ‘on the outside’ after their sentences have been served.

One Phuket resident who has attended several past fairs voiced his support for the event.

“It’s a good time and there are some good bargains to be had. The furniture may be a bit unfashionable for some people’s tastes, but it is very sturdy and durable.

“There is always a lot of food, drink and entertainment and lots of things for kids to do. I go every year and always enjoy it.

“If you want to get the best bargains, just wait until the last night and see what’s left. There’s no way these prison officials want to take all this stuff back with them, especially given the overcrowding in these facilities,” he said.

— MCOT / Stephen Fein


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