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Thanitpong’s Arrest in Bangkok: A Scamming Plot Unveiled and Debunked

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Scammer Arrested in Bangkok Parking Lot - Bangkok Post File Photo

In an audacious scheme that could easily be a plotline straight out of a Hollywood thriller, a suspected scammer harnessing the allure of false promises has been unveiled. This intriguing story doesn’t play out on the silver screen but right in the heart of Bangkok, uncovering a blend of deception, desperation, and ultimately, justice.

Meet 48-year-old Thanitpong—no surname revealed, as if keeping one last secret. Thanitpong was swept up by the long arm of the law this past Saturday at a posh condominium’s parking lot in Bangkok’s bustling Ramkhamhaeng district. His arrest signals a broader, nationwide crackdown spearheaded by Thai authorities against criminals allegedly funded by shadowy Chinese entities.

With a warrant from the esteemed Phra Nakhon Tai Kwaeng Court issued on May 24, officers scored a key victory in their battle against international crime. Thanitpong had tantalized foreign residents with a fine-tuned pitch: forging Thai passports with an upfront “deposit” of 600,000 baht, funneling these funds into a bank account belonging to one Tengyong.

The tangled web of deceit began to unravel in October 2023, spurred by an aggrieved victim’s report. After the initial 600,000 baht payment vanished into the ether with no sign of a passport in sight, Thanitpong ratcheted up his audacious demands, pleading for an additional 1.3 million baht to supposedly expedite the elusive documents. In total, the unfortunate victim shelled out 1.9 million baht—an astronomical sum that bought nothing but empty promises.

When cornered by law enforcement, Thanitpong couldn’t evade the truth. He confessed to the scam, providing a backstory that adds a poignant twist. Before the Covid-19 pandemic altered the geopolitical landscape, Thanitpong had been offering a somewhat grey service of “passport conversion” to non-citizens. The price? A cool 2.5 million baht per person, a fee that perhaps highlighted the desperation of his clientele. However, his lucrative enterprise came to a screeching halt as the Thai government tightened its net around crimes lubricated by Chinese capital.

There’s an emotional undertone to this saga. On learning that his father was also marked by the law, Thanitpong made a heartfelt plea, requesting to shoulder all charges solo. He professed that his father was blissfully ignorant of the illegal machinations that put bread on their table. This act of protective sacrifice sheds a surprising light on the man behind the crime, painting a portrait of complex, perhaps conflicting, motivations.

This intriguing case brimming with deceit, hefty financial stakes, and a touch of familial loyalty reminds us that reality can sometimes outdo fiction. Yet, it underscores the vigilant efforts of Thai authorities to root out corruption, ensuring that Bangkok remains a magnet for legitimate business and wanderlust-driven tourism, not a playground for scam artists.


  1. Joe June 8, 2024

    This is just another case of people trying to exploit others. Sad to see that some fall for these scams.

    • Larry Davis June 8, 2024

      It’s not always that simple, Joe. People are often desperate and will cling to any hope, even false ones.

      • grower134 June 8, 2024

        True, but we also need to be more vigilant. It’s 2023; how can people still fall for these obvious scams?

      • Joe June 8, 2024

        I get that people are desperate, but a 600,000 baht deposit for a passport should raise some red flags no matter the situation.

  2. Jill June 8, 2024

    I find it interesting that he tried to protect his father. It adds a layer of humanity to his crime.

    • JennyL June 8, 2024

      Yeah, but does that really excuse what he did? The victims suffered a lot because of his actions.

    • Jill June 8, 2024

      Of course it doesn’t excuse it, but it does show he’s not just a heartless scammer. People are multifaceted.

    • Ace_45 June 8, 2024

      Maybe it’s just another manipulation tactic. Once a scammer, always a scammer.

  3. Tom B. June 8, 2024

    It’s good to see Thai authorities taking these scams seriously. They need to send a clear message.

    • Sarah_Phd June 8, 2024

      Absolutely, but they should also work on preventing these scams in the first place. More awareness campaigns would help.

    • Tom B. June 8, 2024

      True, prevention is key. Education about these scams should be more widespread.

  4. Mia June 8, 2024

    I wonder how many more are involved and yet to be caught. These operations often have many layers.

    • Steve D. June 8, 2024

      It’s likely a huge network. Scammers are getting more sophisticated every year.

      • Mia June 8, 2024

        Exactly. And it’s not just limited to Thailand. These kinds of scams are everywhere.

  5. Kayla K June 8, 2024

    Why would anyone pay millions for a fake passport when it’s illegal and bound to fail?

    • Alex June 8, 2024

      Desperation and being uninformed can lead people to make irrational decisions.

    • mark007 June 8, 2024

      And don’t forget, some places are almost impossible to get out of legally, so people take risks.

  6. Rick June 8, 2024

    This can’t be the first time he’s scammed people. Authorities should dig deeper.

    • Grower134 June 8, 2024

      I agree. He’s probably scammed dozens, if not hundreds, before getting caught this time.

    • Rick June 8, 2024

      Exactly. And who knows if his father was truly innocent? Could be a family business.

  7. Sophia June 8, 2024

    The weird part is the whole ‘Tengyong’ bank account thing. Feels like a plot from a TV show.

    • Carter June 8, 2024

      It’s more common than you’d think. Shell accounts and fake identities are regular tools for scammers.

    • Sophia June 8, 2024

      I guess that makes sense. Just shows how intricate and well-planned these scams are.

  8. Anna June 8, 2024

    I hope the victims get their money back somehow. It’s heartbreaking to see people lose their life savings.

    • JordanG June 8, 2024

      Unfortunately, in most scams, it’s rare for victims to fully recover their money.

  9. Megan June 8, 2024

    This guy clearly has some serious guts, but also a twisted sense of morals. Like, really? Using a pandemic to scam people?

    • Ben02 June 8, 2024

      The pandemic has brought out both the worst and best in people, sadly.

  10. Chad June 8, 2024

    I’m curious if this crackdown will actually deter future scammers or if they’ll just get more secretive.

    • EmilyS June 8, 2024

      Scammers always seem to find a way. We need constant vigilance and education.

  11. James L June 8, 2024

    What about those shadowy Chinese entities? Are they just going to get away with this?

    • Nancy S. June 8, 2024

      International crime is tough to combat. It’s not as easy as just arresting a few people.

  12. Mark F June 8, 2024

    I think the real issue here is the desperation of people. If we can alleviate that, maybe there won’t be such a fertile ground for scammers.

  13. Tina June 8, 2024

    The amount of money involved is staggering. This isn’t small-time; it’s big business.

    • Kyle June 8, 2024

      Yeah, and it makes you wonder how many more are out there doing the same thing.

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