A 57-year-old unnamed man of British nationality was arrested by tourist police for overstaying in Thailand, but officers are now investigating whether he was a victim of a theft crime perpetrated by a Thai woman.
Stranded in Thailand without funds, he worked as a labourer on construction sites a Bt50 daily wage after his Thai girlfriend took away his documents and his ATM cards and abandoned him.
Police said the man met a Thai woman during his vacation and was invited to stay at her home in Lop Buri. She then stole all of his documents and ATM cards, leaving him without money and having to work as labourer for a living while saving money to return to his home country.
Tourist Police Bureau deputy commissioner Pol Maj-General Surachet Hakparn raised the man’s plight during a Thursday press conference where he discussed the results of an operation to suppress international criminals.
Surachet said the man told police that he worked as a postman in the UK before travelling to Thailand after retiring. He receives a pension of 300 pounds monthly.
He told police that he found a Thai girlfriend and moved in to her home. After she took his documents and cards, he was unable to get his pension or to travel back to his home country. That left him depending on a Bt50 per day wage as a construction worker.
Surachet has ordered Lop Buri police to investigate the man’s claims as the man wanted to file a lawsuit against his ex-girlfriend for stealing. The police also contacted the British Embassy in Bangkok to assist in his case and facilitate his return journey to the UK.
In discussing the tourist police operation to crack down on illegal immigrants in 28 areas in Bangkok and nearby provinces, Surachet said officers had arrested nine foreigners for violating immigration law.
Three Nigerian nationals were arrested on the charge of entering the country illegally. One Nigerian and one British citizen were charged for overstaying, and four people from Mali were arrested on for illegally staying in Thailand as they were previously banned from entering the country.
Surachet said most of the offenders were involved in international crime networks and connected with drugs dealing, human trafficking and telephone scam.