CHON BURI: The alleged leader of a gang of thieves that preyed on visitors to the annual Wan Lai Pattaya water festival, slashing bags and stealing cash and valuables, has been arrested.
Somkhanae Yoohong, 23, was detained on an arrest warrant issued by Pattaya Provincial Court for collusion in theft or receiving stolen goods, and collusion in unlawfully using electronic cards belonging to other people and causing them damage.
Mr Somkhanae was caught in Pattaya and taken to a news conference on Thursday.
Pol Col Apichai Krobphet, superintendent of Pattaya police, said the arrest followed complaints by several tourists, both Thais and foreigners, that thieves masquerading as visitors celebrating the Wan Lai Pattaya festival on April 19 had slashed their bags, fleeing with cash, mobile phones, credit cards and other valuables.
Police investigators found out the thieves were members of a gang allegedly led by Mr Somkhanae, who runs a company that creates websites.
The thieves had shared stolen cash and valuables among themselves and taken stolen electronic cards to the gang leader, who then used them for electronic transactions totalling several million baht, Pol Col Apichai said.
Digging deeper, investigators confirmed there were at least 10 members of this organised gang of thieves. Police had identified them and knew their whereabouts, the Pattaya police chief said. They would be rounded up and brought to justice.
Source : BangkokPost