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Minivan driver charged after threatening foreigner in Phuket Town – VIDEO

PHOTO: MGR Online

A minivan driver has been charged with threatening another individual after a viral video showed him verbally abusing and intimidating a foreign tourist in Phuket Town. The Phuket News reports that the driver, 47 year old Poramet Soraket, presented himself to Phuket City Police yesterday, July 3, to hear the charge.

Phuket City Police Chief Pratuang Pholmana confirmed the driver was sought by police after footage was posted online that showed him hurling verbal abuse at a tourist, later named as 35 year old Fariz Bin Abdulkardir Bashar Ahil, from Singapore. The incident took place outside the Coffee Talk shop on Ratsada Road, according to the Phuket News report.

Initial eye witness reports stated that Poramet was brandishing an iron bar while abusing the tourist. However, Pratuang says the driver told him it was a rubber belt.

According to police, the driver, who works for a Krabi-based company, had removed the tourist’s luggage from the minivan and placed it down heavily on the ground. Mr Fariz was seemingly annoyed at how his luggage was handled and berated Poramet, while taking his photograph.

Watch the alleged assault HERE.

This angered Poramet, but Pratuang says the driver has apologised and explained that the luggage was heavy.

“The van driver said that the luggage was heavy. He apologised for the incident.”

According to the Phuket News report, the police chief went on to defend the minivan driver, explaining that the charge of threatening someone does not constitute a violent crime and the driver was merely annoyed at having his photo taken. He then seemingly goes on to praise the minivan driver for his restraint (yes, really).

“Thanks to the driver of this van, there was no assault. He did not cause further escalation.”

The police have not confirmed if the minivan driver’s version of events matches the tourist’s testimony. The Phuket News also reports that officers would not allow any photos to be taken of Poramet while he was at the police station.

SOURCE: The Phuket News

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