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Thais arrested for charging ‘access fees’ to Freedom Beach

PHUKET: Two Thai men have been arrested for charging tourists cash in order to access Freedom Beach, south of Patong. The men are believed to have been raking in an estimated B10,000 a day.


By The Phuket News

Thursday 15 November 2018, 12:34PM


Tourist Police and Immigration officers made the arrests yesterday (Nov 14) during a raid led by national Immigration Chief Maj Gen Surachate Hakparn

Gen Surachate previously served as the national Deputy Chief of the Tourist Police and remains one of the key figures in ‘Thailand’s Action Taskforce for Information technology Crime Suppression’ (‘Tactics’).

The raid yesterday followed the ‘Tactics’ taskforce and Tourist Police receiving complaints, Gen Surachate explained in a post on the Immigration Bureau Facebook page.

The raid also came while Gen Surachate was in Phuket to join the media event to highlight the new salvage team hired to recover the sunken tour boat Phoenix. (See story here.)

Police reported that they had been charging money for people to access Freedom Beach for more than one year.

They charged B200 per person, police noted.

The area the men were charging access to was protected national forest designated under the responsibility of the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP), police explained in their report.

Police noted in their report that during questioning, the suspects – who police have not publicly named – said that they started charging the access fees before the land was designated a national protected forest area.

 

 

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Timothy | 18 November 2018 - 09:22:18

they were committing a crime by charging the people 200 baht. So I guess there was something wrong with it. The fact that people are willing to pay to sit on a nice quiet beach that is not a complete toilet like Patong beach, speaks for itself. What I can't understand is why anyone would want to lie on Patong beach. Let alone swim in the "algae bloom" oil slick, sewer water.

Pauly44 | 18 November 2018 - 07:27:20

Yep J... blame to stupid foreigner for 
getting fleeced in Thailand, never blame the Thai Criminals committing an illegal act hey, nothing like investing, warped mindset.

Jor12 | 16 November 2018 - 21:10:54

Paully, if stupid people want to pay 200B to enter a beach, that's their problem. Nothing wrong with entrepreneurs taking advantage of idiots. Other than idiots, who else in their right mind would pay 200B to lie on the beach? It's no different in saying "invest with me and I will guarantee 100% return on your investment."

DeKaaskopp | 16 November 2018 - 11:35:11

Typical  generalizing comment by a typical hater.Doesn't he know the way to the airport?

Pauly44 | 16 November 2018 - 11:12:23

What would you and your gang of defenders call them, pillars of Thai society I suppose! 

Nasa12 | 16 November 2018 - 10:18:23

You pay at Kata Beach 200 Bath for a sunbed, if you lying on the sand closer then 10 meters, they go and kick sand on you aaaaaal day looooong. 

Kurt | 16 November 2018 - 09:33:28

These matters are damaging the thai tourist image/reputation. Same as dual pricing for National Parks and the Grand Palace ( 500 thb for foreign tourists and free for thai!).

ematt | 15 November 2018 - 22:02:11

"Typical Thai low life scum...."  Once again, feel the love from P44!

Pauly44 | 15 November 2018 - 16:26:42

Typical Thai low life scum, extorting foreigners seems like a national past time, they should be made to repay all back twice! 

MJJA | 15 November 2018 - 16:19:52

Really, so before it was made a protected national forest it was okay to charge "foreigner" a fee? WOW Thailand when will you learn to stop abusing the tourist- maybe when they stop coming, Oh wait like NOW with the Chinese.    

Kurt | 15 November 2018 - 16:18:12

Freedom Beach has been a few years ago also under the 'Authorities' magnify glass. For same reason. How is it possible that this repeats? Were the culprits paying police/authorities  'close-eyes money' or what? Something like 500-1000 thb per day?

RogerDutton | 15 November 2018 - 13:30:19

:-)

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