A traffic officer at the Pattaya police station has been temporarily dismissed from service after he allegedly extorted 30,000 baht from a Chinese tourist who was caught with e-cigarette possession in January.
First our previous story:
A policeman from the Pattaya police station has been transferred to an inactive post pending an investigation into a claim that he had extorted 30,000 baht from a Chinese tourist who was caught carrying an illegal vape.
Now for our update:
A fact-finding committee, which was set up after the incident made headlines on Thai media, found that there was sufficient evidence to support the extortion claim against the concerned officer, Pol Snr. Sgt-Major Noppakrit “Khai” Pornwatthanakit.
The claim was made by an unidentified Chinese tourist, who said they were allegedly extorted out of 30,000 Baht from Noppakrit while vacationing in Pattaya on January 28th or 29th.
Noppakrit reportedly demanded the money as a fine because the tourist was carrying an illegal e-cigarette. At first, he reportedly demanded 60,000 baht, but the tourist bargained it down to 30,000 baht.
The story got the public attention after the tourist shared their experience with a tour guide who subsequently contacted a famous Thai media outlet to spread the story, resulting in Noppakrit getting transferred to an inactive post at the operations center of the provincial police office.
Noppakrit has been temporarily dismissed, pending a serious disciplinary probe by another committee.
Pattaya Police were also ordered to pursue legal action against him on extortion charges of Sections 149 and 157 of the Criminal Code.
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