Policeman wins luxury yacht auction

PHUKET TOWN: A police officer who declined to give his name, but who works in the Economic Crime Investigations Division in Bangkok, today won the auction for a luxury motor yacht at the Phuket Customs Region 5 office. And thanks to the fact that there were no other bidders, he got the boat for a song – just 5.5 million baht. The high-speed yacht, a two-year-old Sealine T46, was seized in November by customs officers when its Singaporean owner failed to pay import duty. (See also https://thethaiger.com/news/index.asp?Id=1362) There were just two serious contenders for the vessel, and one of these, Englishman Martin Constable, arrived too late to enter a bid. As a result the police officer bought the yacht for the reserve price of 5.5 million baht. A new yacht of the same type costs some 12 million baht from the makers in England. Import duty of about 200% would take the price in Thailand to about 36 million baht. Pol Maj Prasert Srikunnarat, inspector of Phuket Marine Police, said that only a handful of people, including some foreigners, had attended the auction. “All of them asked for information on the auction procedures and most said that they plan to bid ‘next time’ because, in this case, the price was too high for them. Most are looking for boats in the range of 1 million baht,” Maj Prasert told the Gazette. Mr Constable, a 60-year-old retiree, said he had intended to bid for the Sealine but had arrived too late. “I love traveling and I have a small speedboat in Kata. If I’d won this auction I would have kept the boat purely for private use. I’ll wait for the next auction; the officers told me there may be another one next month,” Mr Constable said. The winning bidder paid his 25% of the price on the spot. He made an appointment to collect the boat and move it to Bangkok next Monday, at which time, he said, he will pay the balance of the sale price. He told the Gazette the boat will be kept for private use.

Phuket News
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