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Expat awaits trial for drug charges, mother in England worries and works to pay the bills

Caitlin Ashworth

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Expat awaits trial for drug charges, mother in England worries and works to pay the bills | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Facebook: Michaela Bentley
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While 27 year old expat Louis Bentley awaits trial in Thailand for drug charges, his mother back in England is working 12 hour shifts to pay her son’s bills. For his mother, Michaela, the anticipation of waiting for the her son’s February court date, in a country so far from her with laws she’s unfamiliar with, has been “horrendous.”

Louis was arrested by Phuket police back in July and spent 2 weeks in Thai prison. Louis worked as an English teacher in China for 5 years. He took a trip to Thailand, but when the coronavirus outbreak spread worldwide, he stayed.

Michaela told her local newspaper, the Barnsley Chronicle in South Yorkshire, that she believes drugs were planted on Louis after he got in a dispute with a local. He wasn’t able to make bail at first because his “friends” allegedly ran off with his money.

She was able to raise enough money in an online fundraising campaign to pay the bail and other legal fees. But that was back in July and now the more than 9,000 pounds she raised has been spent.

“We’re sending over money to pay for his lodgings, food, gas and electric… I work 12 hours, 4 days a week, to earn money so that I can keep my house going and keep his house going.”

Now it’s just a waiting game. But the time leading up to the trial has been stressful. Michaela’s says her son says gotten depressed and sometimes days he doesn’t answer the phone, leaving her worried because he’s her only source of information when it comes to the trial.

“We’re just hoping for a good outcome when it comes to the trial.”

SOURCES: Yorkshire Live | Barnsley Chronicle

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18 Comments

18 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Follow me

    November 13, 2020 at 4:14 pm

    What drugs

  2. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    November 13, 2020 at 4:28 pm

    He should skip bail. He is likely to be found guilty if they found the drugs on him, regardless, of whether they were planted or not.
    Paying bail in Thailand is simply a way of paying a bribe = they know the accused will skip.
    The Thais have even let the accused go home for weddings!

  3. Avatar

    Tony Grace

    November 13, 2020 at 5:53 pm

    What is known as a golden goose for Thai legal representatives in Thailand Son orDoughter on drug charges other parents money the case will probably be deferred at least four or five times and will carry on foe a year or so all that time mum and dad sending money so remember in Thailand if you are bought with drugs you pay one way or the other.

  4. Avatar

    Issan John

    November 13, 2020 at 7:52 pm

    Maybe I’m missing something, but “SO WHAT?”

    • Avatar

      Toby Andrews

      November 14, 2020 at 12:42 am

      True enough: so what, if he is guilty, but this Thailand,
      No jury here. and how long does he wait for trial?
      Will he receive a fair trial?
      If he could count on that, he should stay and go to trial.
      I think he should not trust the judicial system in Thailand and run.

      • Avatar

        Issan John

        November 17, 2020 at 12:38 am

        He’d be welcome in Cambodia with open arms, like all the other dross.

        • Avatar

          Toby Andrews

          November 17, 2020 at 2:24 pm

          He could hide out in the north east with all the other ferang morons.

          • Avatar

            preesy chepuce

            November 19, 2020 at 8:22 pm

            How is Isan and Cambodia any different from the rest of SEAsia? or the rest of the developing world for that matter? It’s the funniest thing to see turds in a toilet arguing who has the most sweetcorn in them.

  5. Avatar

    D. McKaig

    November 13, 2020 at 9:18 pm

    With “Friends” like his, he needs no enemies.

  6. Avatar

    James

    November 14, 2020 at 12:38 am

    Obviously, we do not know all sides of the story.

    We do not know what the drug was?

    When I was in Krabi last year I was in a local Reggie bar with live music and people were openly smoking marijuana and I was told people can have very small quantities for personal use?
    arena
    So if the local person did plant the drugs it would have to be a sizable amount to be illegal meaning the local would have lost the value of those drugs just to get revenge for an argument?

    Does the local have money to burn?

    That does not make sense?

    I might be wrong with the personal use comment above as I do not participate in that arena and so I do not know the rules.

    • Avatar

      Jack Sombra

      November 14, 2020 at 9:57 am

      “I was told people can have very small quantities for personal use”

      Don’t believe everything you are told

    • Avatar

      Michael Wallentin

      November 14, 2020 at 5:44 pm

      Even a “small” amount will land you in jail for months or maybe even years. If you are lucky you can “pay” yourself out of troubles but that will cost a small fortune.

      • Avatar

        James

        November 14, 2020 at 10:31 pm

        Jack and Michael

        That is what I thought, I don’t touch any stuff like that so no problem for me but I saw it being used in two bars in Krabi and it was all in the open.

        I thought let’s get out of there in case I am innocently implicated.

  7. Avatar

    Perceville Smithers

    November 14, 2020 at 6:48 am

    Unless they’re friends I know or a Thai can vouch for’em, I don’t like meeting and hanging with white Westerners because they always wanna score some dope after a few drinks.

    • Avatar

      preesy chepuce

      November 19, 2020 at 8:28 pm

      See, I never meet any farangs like that…

  8. Avatar

    Jerrod Valles

    November 14, 2020 at 10:55 am

    Thailand is the Land of Smiles

  9. Avatar

    Tiji

    November 16, 2020 at 3:56 pm

    Usually, a honest and clean drug bust results in fast court procedures and rulings. The dodgy ones always take many many months.

    Know guys being caught for personal use, different drugs, never paid more than 20K bail and 5K court fine with weed, and maybe 50K total with something else.

  10. Avatar

    John Dee

    November 17, 2020 at 6:31 am

    What a stupid boy he is.anyone with half a brain know not to mess with drugs in Thailand serves the lad right. Drugs are for mugs. It’s funny how they always blame other people when it’s solely down to their own stupidity.. then they want everyone else to feel sorry for them

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Read more headlines, reports & breaking news in Phuket. Or catch up on your Thailand news.

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.

Expats

Ban on sales and promotion of alcohol online starts December 7

The Thaiger

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Ban on sales and promotion of alcohol online starts December 7 | The Thaiger

From December 7 you’ll no longer, officially, be able to purchase alcohol online in Thailand, according to a posting in the Royal Gazette back in September, the Thai government will prohibit the sales and promotion of alcoholic drinks on every online platform from December 7.

The ban includes direct sales, promotion and introduction of alcoholic products online, but will not include electronic payments of purchases at retail stores, restaurants and bars.

Selling and buying beer, wine and spirits online has become more popular, but the Thai PM says that internet alcohol sales are harder to control than sales at local liquor stores. The announcement said that it’s difficult to check that the provisions of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Act are being followed online, like no alcohol sales before 5pm or on certain holidays (although many local stores didn’t follow the rules anyway).

“The Royal Gazette had published the announcement of ‘Prohibition of the sale of alcoholic beverages via electronic sales nationwide’ on September 8 noting that alcohol has become more easily accessible online due to the popularity of social media platforms and specialist Apps.

“No person shall sell alcoholic beverages or provide services related to alcoholic beverages on electronic channels. Online payment for trading such beverages at actual stores are excluded.”

With Thai officials obsessed with the perceived evils of alcohol, Thailand already has a ban on the sale of alcohol before 11am, between 2 – 5pm, and after midnight. It’s also illegal to brew your own beer at home or to post pictures of branded alcohol online, either as a private citizen or as a company. But the government’s latest announcement, that drinkers won’t be able to purchase alcohol online that really ignited the Twittersphere and social media.

Deputy PM and the Minister of Public Health, Anutin Charnvirakul, told AP after a meeting of the alcohol control committee on November 7, that they’d agreed to draft guidelines, under the revision of the Public Health Ministry, to inform the Public regarding the Royal Gazette announcement of banning online alcohol trading.

“Violators of the new ban will be subject to up to six months in prison and/or a fine of up to 10,000 baht.”

People will still be able to use electronic methods of payment, like bank transfers, when buying alcohol at stores, restaurants or other establishments, just not purchase from online portals.

The Ministry is going to launch a publicity campaign about the new bans in the week leading up to December 7.

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Economy

Government aims to offer work permits to foreigners who invest at least US$1 million

Maya Taylor

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Government aims to offer work permits to foreigners who invest at least US$1 million | The Thaiger
PHOTO: www.pinoythaiyo.com

Probably the most expensive Work Permit in the world. The Thai government is considering offering work permits to foreigners who invest at least US$1 million in Thai property or businesses. The Centre for Economic Situation Administration has approved a proposal to grant work permits to eligible Elite Card holders. In order to qualify, they must have the top-tier Thailand Elite visa card, which costs 1 million baht and is valid for 5 years. They must also be prepared to invest their funds for at least 5 years.

The governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand, Yuthasak Supasorn, says it’s hoped the move will boost foreign investment in the Kingdom. It’s hoped the plan could generate 31 billion baht for the economy, 1 billion of which would come from Elite card fees, with the remainder being generated by foreign investment.

PM Prayut Chan-o-cha has instructed the TAT and the Foreign and Interior Ministries to work together on the proposal, before submitting it to Cabinet for final approval.

The CESA has also approved the proposed partnership between the TAT, Thai Airways, and local hotels, in which tourism packages inclusive of quarantine, can be offered to foreign arrivals. It’s understood the packages will be available from December 1 until March 31 next year. The government is targeting 2,000 visitors, generating revenue of 200 million baht every month.

Just another ‘proposal’ we have to keep track of as the visa situation in Thailand becomes increasingly complex.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Tourism

Finally! TAT partners with hotels, airlines, to offer travel stimulus package for expats

Maya Taylor

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Finally! TAT partners with hotels, airlines, to offer travel stimulus package for expats | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Shutterstock

The Tourism Authority of Thailand is partnering with airlines and over 300 hotels around the country in another domestic tourism stimulus scheme, this time aimed at expats. It’s understood all foreigners and their families, living in the Kingdom, are eligible to avail of the scheme.

The “Expat Travel Bonus” offers a 1,000 baht per night discount on hotel accommodation at participating properties. The more nights booked, the bigger the discount. Participating hotels are registered with the Thai Hotels Association and can be found here.

The promotion will run until December 31 and interested travellers will need to contact the hotels directly to book. The scheme also allows for a 50% discount on domestic flights with AirAsia, Bangkok Airways, and Nok Air.

Marisa Sukosol Nunbhakdi from the Thai Hotels Association, has welcomed the scheme, saying hotels need as much support as possible in the absence of international tourism.

“With very limited travel from overseas, Thai hotels need all the support they can get, so there’s never been a better time for expats to help out and enjoy a great value vacation at the same time. I am happy that the association can be a part of this campaign.”

The TAT’s Chattan Kunjara Na Ayudhya echoes the sentiment, saying he hopes more expats will take advantage of the opportunity to get out and explore more of the country in which they live.

“In Thailand, the expat market has great potential, so we hope this campaign will encourage more expats to explore Thailand and show support for our hospitality industry.”

Before you rush into booking the ‘promo’ prices and taking advantage of the stimulus, check the prices for the same hotels on Agoda.com, bookings.com, hotels.com or your favourite OTA – The Thaiger.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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