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Phuket Foreigners Losing Homes To Con Men


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I read through this "story" and find it runs very similar to the scam emails one gets. Even to the extent of the bad English used in the "story".

I just find that the whole story sucks and is at all not true. You have the 'rich Chinese man" the Manager, the driver, and the gambling expert.. Purely fiction from a D class novel!

What dam_n rubbish!

I agree, story just doesn't add up. She used gold and cash?

Where did she sign away the house?

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The person who has lost out here is the foreigner and his kids, not the wife. Maybe they had a family together and the the kids have also lost out them because there will be less or no money for their education and food / clothing etc. If anyone reading this finds themselves in a situation where you have essentially lost your life, your wife, all your money and possibly your children where one moment earlier you were living a happy life with kids in school, and an easy lifestyle I think that would be utterly devastating. Not only are you looking at financial disaster but if you are a family man as well you will be utterly distraught as to how you are going to look after and bring up your children never mind yourself. Your dreams are shattered and your partner gone. Your life is devastated and then you have to deal on your own with the money lenders threatening you, lawyers and courts who want substantial sums to start EACH case plus security deposits lodged to court to cover possible damages if you lose, while the money lender has the property you bought for 20% of what you paid for it by being in on the scam. Note that he does not have to lodge any deposits into court, his court fee is tiny and he will have lawyers in tow."Its a good business" one lawyer said to me! Yes it sure is - you cheat or scam some not so clever girl into signing over one piece of property probably for a smallish amount with a lot of lies and promises it will all work out. Then once trapped, persuade her to commit fraud under threat when she can't pay, so as to get the rest of the property until there is none left, safe in the knowledge you as the money lender have committed no fraud, won't go to jail, and can fight a case against the person from whom you have taken all his immovable assets because he will likely have insufficient funds to bring the cases against you. Even if he can it will take years and probably you can just bribe the court to find in your favour. I truly believe that there are several gangs working in Phuket who target wives of foreigners and use many diiferent ways to con them into putting the property which under Thai law has to be in their name, on the line to a lender - the lender is of course into the scam too and loads all his interest up front knowing full well the property will come to them becasue the rates of interest are simply astronomical. The transfer fees to the land department also add to the cost of the loan. These ^&**&^%$%^ scum basically get a house for about 20% of its value and get the transfer fees paid for them as part of the deal.

It is big business believe me and it needs to be tackled. Instead of a feeling of som num na for some relatively uneducated getting tricked, possibly getting drugged, maybe it would be worth a moment to think of the ingenuity of the people doing the persuasion against which many people have no defence or experience. It would be worth several moments to consider the enormity of the damage done to the foreigner and his kids. Several lives may be destroyed through this. Irreparable damage to the family unit and probably the life savings of the foreigner targetted, leaving him devoid of hope and broken. Remember the Thai woman has probably lost very little as most do not come into a relationship with many assets - it is the foreigners assets being targetted here. The gangs target the foreigners because they have expensive assets and no support when the shit hits the fan - most probably cannot afford to go to court and so the criminal can succeed all too often.

It may be som num na for the wife (if she was drugged then not so and Ii am inclined to believe the people running this sort of scam would more likely than not try that to ensure success). It is not som num na for the guy who has lost everything. The mechanism is 'Sale with right of Redemption". Loan value typically 20% of value of property - add agents fee - add 6 months interest in advance - add transfer fees at the land department - add bribes to the land department if property not in sole name (or subject to lease) as they will have to break the law accepting forged documents to transfer the property. Interest 3% or 4% per month.

Eg. 10 million house - 2 million cash, 50k agents fee, 50k land official, 300k transfer fee = 2.4 million add 6 months at 4% interest 6 x 96,000 = 576,000. So Registered sale of house for 2,976,000 and if in six months you cannot repay the loan = 2,976,000 plus 300,000 transfer fee back = 3,276,000 then the house STAYS WITH the money lender - it's already in his name. If you are the foreigner how will you know this has happened. It's simple - no one will tell you anything, in fact they will be working together to actively hide it, your wife will be scared out of her wits when the realisation finally hits.

Then after 6 months the money lender being a kindly Thai will offer to extend the loan based on money from the next property she has in her name (if more than one), back down the land office, more bribes to agents, land officials and taxes paid to the government. Rinse & repeat until there is no money left. The foreigner will know nothing until it is too late because he will hear nothing and see no-one. Safes don;t help - they can crack them.

Don't be so quick in your judgements people!

There is a new website at thiascare dot com which is collating names of all the people involved in these scams. If you have been 'had' contact the people there - they are well connected and their list of names is gathering momentum. It is totally anonymous by the way. I gave my details already! Get on over there.

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How frickin stupid can some people be!!

As stupid as you or I on GBH.

GBH is colourless and tasteless and was clearly in the glass of water.

It gives the victim total trust.

It is often used in date rape.

A friend of mine went shopping in Panthip plaza

and emerged with his new ipod and laptop and other goodies

in a large shopping bag.

He was targeted by a tuk tuk driver who took him to his house.

There he was also given a glass of water and did not remember much more

except that he gambled and lost everything.

He was not a gambling man.

When you say "GBH is colourless and tasteless and was clearly in the glass of water", do you mean:

A. It was a clear substance in A glass of water

B. That is was clearly in THE glass of water the woman drank.

And when you say "He was targeted by a tuk tuk driver who took him to his house", did you mean:

A. The Tuk Tuk Driver took your friend to your friends house

B. The Tuk Tuk Driver took your friend to the Tuk Tuk Drivers house

I look forward to your response.

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And the icing on the cake for me is that the "wealthy guy" scams his con men "friends" out of the lot - and they go running to the police!! HAHAHAHAH - you couldn't make this stuff up!!!

But surely this is made up - it's too unbelievable to be anything but .............. even in Thailand!

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The funny thing is, the foreign husband probably believes the story. :cheesy:

Amen. How could anybody be so bloody naive and patently uninformed as to pay for a house or anything else that is in another person's name? Especially in LOS. It's not even co-signing which is universally understood to be as foolish a risk as exists, it is worse!! "But me wife is different." Yeah right. How would you know? Men who walk down this path typically demonstrate inexperience and naiveté, like socially challenged omega males being led to the grandiose delusion that they are now alphas.

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I believe this tactic is known as the "fan tan" but I am not really sure;

I was once put into the same position but I was not fleeced becos I was not greedy lol

Yes you were smart and not greedy.

Of course these people are easy to take, they a greedy and stupid. No wonder few go to the police with such a story of how utterly stupid they were.

there was another foreigner whose girlfriend gave the title deed to a property to a loan shark in return for a loan to help someone

story sound fishy but I didn't bother to ask more

chinese saying; never feed a woman even when she's old

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The storey is symptomatic of the childish tales Thai people tell western people as their best effort and lie to explain why they have done something stupid or simply cheated the westerner.

They think we are as stupid as they are and judging by the responses here, they are right !

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Amazing. In the Land of Scams a Thai got scammed by some foreigners.

The gullible don't want to come forward to tell how they lost 12 million baht...... Nice surprise for the husband when he gets home.

AWESOME.

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I find it difficult to feel sorry for the girl after reading the entire "story"

Yep, I agree 100%. "Stupid is what stupid does". Maybe it's true, however, I find the whole story hard to believe. Their saying this has been repeated a number of times ? Wives are putting the entire welfare and security of their families on the line to strangers. What's missing in this picture ?

Edited by paulian
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A nearly exact attempt was done on me in Chiang Mai over 20 years ago, but in this case the 'wealthy' guy was a Prince from Brunei and liked to gamble but was bad at it. When he walked in the door looking like a geek with slicked down hair, glasses and sloppy suit I was out of there in a flash. ;) And yes, I could feel something was coming down but was 'befriended' and was invited to the conman's house before he put the scenario before me. BTW, the conman said he was a dealer working in Genting Highlands and knew how things worked. :D

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Looking at this from another angle, I’m not certain that an actual crime has been committed here?

The woman was quite willing with all intent to cheat someone out of a lot of money.

So she knowingly became involved in some card game for high stakes at her own free will believing that she was going to walk away from the scam a lot richer.

The only crime that I can see was committed here, is that gambling is illegal in Thailand, so in fact as a participant of this card game, the woman was also breaking the law.

As for the money, the woman took a gamble and lost, so I cannot understand how she has any legal claims for the return of her money.

If for example the group did manage to cheat the wealthy guy, I am sure that this alleged victim would not have given a rat’s behind about the man and nothing else would have been said about this event. She would now have been counting her ill-gotten gains with great delight.

What goes around, comes around and in this case has snacked her right back in the face.

Serves her bladdy well right, she deserved everything she got.

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If you believe any of that rubbish you want your brains examining.

It reads like a story. A childish poorly written one at that.

But why do they print such trash, write such rubbish, think that farangs would believe such a thinly disguised piece of juvenile fiction?

Scams there certainly are but codswallop about simply non-credible gullibility and belief that a seven year old would reject is an insult to the intelligence.

Reject.

Next.

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I got caught up in a similar 'poker-scam' in Penang many years ago when I was young and naive, lucky for me I saw through it and got out before the "sinker". These scammers can be extremely slick and apply all the psychological tricks in the book to create a very charged and convincing atmosphere that plays upon the basic 'greed' impulse of the individual.

Even after I got away from the people I was still 2nd guessing if it was a "real" opportunity or a scam.... until I related the story to a guy I met from New York who then looked at me with crossed-eyes and said "man, have you not seen the movie 'The Sting'...geeze! biggrin.gif

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Many years ago, I met some filipino people in bangkok. They seemed like nice people and they invited me to their house for dinner. They then proceeded to try and con me into playing a card game to cheat some "rich lady" out of her money. They showed me how to play and how they were going to cheat this "rich lady" by signaling me to tell me what cards this "rich lady" had. Of course, I had to put up my own money to play. Hahahaha! I could see that they were up to no good. So, I told them I had some place to go and LEFT! I had to be careful and watch my back - fortunately they did not try anything. I told them I am alerting the police of this but I never did because I could never prove any of it.

Bottom line - Always be cautious when dealing with strangers. If anything seems suspicious, get out of there.

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There's only one thing to say: You cannot con an honest person.

My GF would run away from them. She's quite intelligent, honest and values what little money she earns.

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Many years ago, I met some filipino people in bangkok. They seemed like nice people and they invited me to their house for dinner. They then proceeded to try and con me into playing a card game to cheat some "rich lady" out of her money. They showed me how to play and how they were going to cheat this "rich lady" by signaling me to tell me what cards this "rich lady" had. Of course, I had to put up my own money to play. Hahahaha! I could see that they were up to no good. So, I told them I had some place to go and LEFT! I had to be careful and watch my back - fortunately they did not try anything. I told them I am alerting the police of this but I never did because I could never prove any of it.

Bottom line - Always be cautious when dealing with strangers. If anything seems suspicious, get out of there.

Same thing happened to me in Bangkok in 1983, although these were Thai. I soon realised I was the target, said gambling was against my religion and left. They are very good at befriending naive travellers (my first trip to Thailand). The guy said he was the Immigration guy that stamped my passport (may have been but then they all looked the same to me ;) ). Over a soft drink he explained that his daughter wanted to nurse in Australia, wanted my advice, yada yada. Next thing I was at his place in suburbia for dinner, then the cards came out. Had to make my own way back to the city.

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Why do you think foreigners cannot own property? So their assets can easily be stripped away. This is clearly acceptable behavior (scams) all the way to the national level where laws are made. If the man had owned his own house this would not have happened.

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Any fool that puts his property in the name of another deserves this kind of treatment. Thai wives are board with their farang husbands and they take up gambling. How many times have you heard of a wife destroying the stupid farang husband?

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My houses, I have two, are both on 30 year registered leases in my name, although ownership is with my partner. However the leases stay with me and travel with me when I return home. I trust my partner but not her intelligencelaugh.gif

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So evil.... this gang has really put some thought into this. Perhaps someone in the gang is trained in psychology.

Playing on basic greed and blurring the lines of moral judgement by controlling the situation ("the guy is rich and will lose money anyway... why not to you?"), perhaps even using drugs (in the water) help ensure the "mark's" judgement is adequately blurred. They may have even studied their marks' behavior and history for some time before moving forward.

Either way, it's definitely creepy.

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I believe this tactic is known as the "fan tan" but I am not really sure;

I was once put into the same position but I was not fleeced becos I was not greedy lol

The same scam was tried on me on Bali, didnt take them up on the "fantastic " offer of easy money.
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