“We have had reports from 16 victims. One victim lost B900 but the losses range up to B63,000 for one person,” Lt Col Amponwat Sangruang deputy chief of Kathu Police told The Phuket News.
The initial report came last Thursday (May 11) after one victim reported using a Siam Commercial Bank ATM near the 7-Eleven store next to the Si Kor Market in Kathu (see map below).
“We have already informed Siam Commercial Bank branch managers of the incidents. We are investigating the reports and checking CCTV to try to identify and track those responsible,” he said.
One additional report noted that a person had noticed an unauthorised withdrawal after the person used a Kasikornbank (Kbank) ATM, Col Amponwat noted.
“Many of the victims told police that the funds had disappeared from their bank accounts on the evening and into the night of May 10,” he said.
“We are checking the CCTV footage the ATMs. We have also contacted police in Sadao, in Songkhla Province, where more than 20 victims reported the same type of incidents,” Col Amponwat said.
The Sadao Police were notified as skimming equipment had been found fitted to an ATM near the border checkpoint to cross into Malaysia, he explained.
“The money was taken via an ATM on the border in Sadao. I believe the perpetrators crossed the border and fled into Malaysia,” Col Amponwat said.
The indents in Phuket and Sadao may be linked, he noted.
“Region 8 Police Commander Lt General Tesa Siriwato and Phuket Provincial Police Chief Maj Gen Teeraphol Thipjaroen have been informed of the incidents. Col Amponwat said.
“They ordered police to keep investigating this,” he added.