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Phuket officials respond to allegations of extorting money from foreign tourist

Thailand police checkpoints bribes

And now it’s Phuket’s turn to get in on the extortion/bribes game.

If anyone has stories about bribes and shakedowns in Phuket, comment below the story and we will follow them up.

A Phuket tourism official has now responded to allegations that law enforcement officers extorted money from a Saudi Arabian visitor to the island. Krit Thepbamrung, President of the Andaman Guide Association, says the story relates to an old allegation and at this stage, it’s impossible to verify.

“We have checked this statement out and found that this issue happened a long time ago and we were not sure if it was true about the extortion. The person who brought this issue back ages after it allegedly happened has damaged Phuket tourism.”

Krit says he believes the incident happened even before the 2014 coup.

According to a Phuket Express report, the story has come to light again after an unnamed tour guide spoke to a Thai news programme in relation to the recent alleged of Taiwanese actress, Charlene An. A Pattaya police officer also tried a similar trick on a Chinese tourist who was vaping along Walking Street last weekend.

Krit says he was contacted by a tour guide in Phuket, who claimed police officers on the island had planted illegal drugs on a tourist from Saudi Arabia and had then extorted around 1 million baht from him.

However, Krit accuses the tour guide who spoke to the media of damaging the island’s reputation by bringing up an old allegation that has not been proven.

“We need to be more careful when we want to say something. We have to check first, otherwise it will go viral around the world. Tourists who heard about this might not want to visit Phuket.”

Phuket’s provincial office, or leading police on the island, have not commented on these allegations at this time.

If anyone has stories about bribes and shakedowns in Phuket, comment below the story and we will follow them up.

SOURCE: The Phuket Express

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