Picture this: the early morning calm in Si Sa Ket province is shattered as a team of sharp-eyed officers from the Consumer Protection Police Division (CPPD) swoop down on a nondescript house in the sleepy Muang district. The mission? To bring to justice a woman who had become a key player in one of the most scandalous financial deceptions in recent memory — the notorious Ufun pyramid scheme.
Indeed, this wasn’t just any arrest; this was the day they apprehended the elusive spouse of a Ufun Store Co executive, a Mrs. Ratthakitbovorn, whose full name is held under a cloak of secrecy, almost as if it could be a plot twist in an international crime thriller. After a decade-long game of cat and mouse, her time on the lam came to an abrupt end, leaving both her and the investigative saga quite literally, out of hiding.
As the day unfolded, Mrs. Ratthakitbovorn stood quietly, an air of resignation about her. She was now the central figure in a drama much larger than herself, with arrest warrants swirling around her — the ink barely dry from their issuance by the Criminal Court on a summer day in ’15 and a chilly morning the following year. These warrants bore the weight of hefty accusations: collusion in transnational crime, public fraud, and money laundering, a trifecta of legal woes.
Let’s rewind to 2015, shall we? The CPPD made their move on Ufun Store Co, uncovering a web of deceit where thousands of unsuspecting individuals were hoodwinked. With a promise of juicy returns on investments in, quite literally, fruit juice drinks, among other sundry items like herbal products and cosmetics, one might say their schemes were as diverse as they were nefarious.
But the Ufun machinations sank even lower when they introduced U-Token, a so-called cryptocurrency that’s as counterfeit as a three-baht coin. It was a classic pyramid setup: recruit new investors to pay off the old, ad infinitum, until it all inevitably collapses like a house of cards amidst a strong gust of reality.
Alas, justice has a long memory, and the law’s net is wide. Complaints poured into the CPPD, a tsunami of grievances against the Ufun cabal. This led to the apprehension of 164 culprits and uncovered financial damages that stagger the mind — north of 10 billion baht.
Back to our suspect: During questioning, Mrs. Ratthakitbovorn maintained her innocence with the resolve of the Sphinx. But the seasoned CPPD investigators were no novices to the dance of deception, and they remained resolute in their skepticism. Thus, she was ushered promptly to face the legal music.
In a Dickensian twist of fate, the Criminal Court had, in March 2017, handed down sentences amounting to an astronomical 12,267 years to 22 defendants, solidifying the serious nature of the Ufun swindle. It took time, but as the wheels of justice ground forward, they ensured that each misstep within this pyramid of pirates led them closer to a future behind bars.
Thus concludes our tale of intrigue and cunning deception. As the veil lifts on the Ufun scheme’s shadowy figures, one is reminded of the timeless proverb: “All that glitters is not gold.” For many, this gold turned out to be nothing but pyrite, and for Mrs. Ratthakitbovorn, a fleeting illusion of freedom has now been traded for the steely reality of justice served.