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Phuket Tuk-Tuk Driver Gets Suspended Sentence For Attack On Tourist


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Phuket tuk-tuk driver gets suspended sentence for attack on tourist

Phuket Gazette

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Patong Police Deputy Superintendent Kittipong Klaikaew. Photo: Gazette file

PHUKET: -- A Phuket tuk-tuk driver who confessed to assaulting an Egyptian tourist in Patong last week has been sentenced to a three-month suspended prison term and fined 3,000 baht.

Patong Police Deputy Superintendent Kittipong Klaikaew identified the driver as 40-year-old Sirapob Ngamriab.

Patong Police were notified of an assault on a tourist in front of the Jungceylon shopping complex on Rat-U-Thit 200 Pi Road at about 8pm last Tuesday.

The area, a short distance from the entrance to the Bangla Road night walking street, has been the site of numerous assaults by tuk-tuk drivers against tourists in recent years.

According to the police report, when officers arrived they found 35-year-old Egyptian Ahmed Taha Taha sitting on the busy road, obstructing traffic. He refused to seek medical treatment until he had a chance to give his account of what happened to police through a translator.

Police eventually convinced him to move to the sidewalk. After telling police that he had been struck in the left eyebrow by a tuk-tuk driver, officers escorted him to Patong Hospital, where doctors closed the wound with eight stitches.

From there, he was taken to Patong Police Station to file a report of the incident.

Before the assault, Mr Taha Taha hailed a tuk-tuk to take him and his family back to their accommodations at the Centra Ashlee Patong Hotel, a distance of about one kilometer.

When asked how many people would be travelling, he told the driver “six”; they then agreed on a fare of 300 baht.

But noticing that more than 10 people had piled into the tuk-tuk, Mr Sirapob raised the fare to 400 baht, according to the official report.

An argument ensued, which resulted in Mr Sirapob losing control and striking the Egyptian in the face twice before fleeing on foot, according to the report.

Mr Sirapob came to the police station at about 11:30pm that night to give his version of events.

He told police that Mr Taha Taha refused to pay him 400 baht, berated him and approached him in an aggressive manner. He confessed to losing his temper and striking Mr Taha Taha before running away quickly to avoid retribution from the tourist’s family members.

At the police station, Mr Sirapob apologized to Mr Taha Taha, offering to pay him compensation.

The Egyptian accepted the apology, refusing to accept any compensation. He also said he did not want to press any charges against Mr Sirapob, Lt Col Kittipong told the Gazette.

However, as assault against a tourist is a non-compoundable offense under the Thai Criminal Code, it cannot be privately resolved between the parties concerned.

Mr Sirapob was thus charged with assault. He confessed and was sentenced by Phuket Provincial Court to three months in prison, suspended for two years, and paid a fine of 3,000-baht.

Lt Col Kittipong said Patong Police were constantly urging tuk-tuk and taxi drivers to exercise patience and restraint when disputes with tourists occur.

“We always have meetings with taxi operators, asking them to exercise self-control. Some of them are not very well-educated; they do not quite understand that when they harm tourists, they will have to suffer the consequences, or that it will damage the tourism industry that sustains them,” he said.

Source: http://www.phuketgaz...ticle16319.html

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-- Phuket Gazette 2012-07-02

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Yeh ... right .... gives the tourists that welcome safe feeling ..... I don't think. I will say no more and stay within the forum rules ... bah.gif

I hear you.... loud n clear.

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This incident was probably only reported because of the injury sustained from the assult that required medical attention.

It makes you wonder how many assaults go unreported, with most tourists just paying the money for fear of having a problem in a foreign country.

It doesn't make for a pleasant holiday experience.

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Topic of the PG is well..

But this was on the article:

Mr Sirapob was thus charged with assault. He confessed and was sentenced by Phuket Provincial Court to three months in prison, suspended for two years, and paid a fine of 3,000-baht.

So this is a good start? Not untouchables anymore?

... reread it.. I guess that suspended for two years points to the prison sentence, not the tuk-tuk license...

Edited by Guest
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Untouchable? Did you read the article? He was arrested, charged and sentenced... huh.png

Sent from my GT-I9100 using Thaivisa Connect App

Yes, but back at work in his tuk-tuk and threatening more tourists.

You'd hope with a suspended sentence hanging over his head, he'd keep himself out of trouble for the two years, but he'll likely just get his mates to whack you instead.

Just as a comparison, does anyone know what the likely sentence would be if it was a Thai on Thai assault? Only then we can really judge if he was let of lightly or not.

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Uh - was this a Tuk-Tuk - i mean the crummy little, about to de-weld itself, 3-wheeled motorbike-engined joke with the belt on a drum rear-brakes ? TEN PEOPLE in one of those ? Or was it one of the bigger things ? Do people use the term Tuk-Tuk for very different vehicles in different parts of the country, because the one we use it for around here in Isaan - no way 10 people can even think about getting in; unless they are midget-sized. Enlighten me pls...

As for the price - sounds like the driver had a reason to get fractious if the deal was being reneged on - don't condone a swipe round the bonce, but can see how it all got out of hand. Moral : don't try to cheat taxi-guys or tuk-tuk jockeys - that's their job ! ;-)

Edited by crazydrummerpauly
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Sends out a clear message to tourist's Do not waste your time reporting thugs only if they are falang because we will not punish our own brothers to the extent that we do if it was a falang !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

He threw two punches, he got a suspended jail sentence, pretty much the same as you would get anywhere in the world.

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300 or 400 baht. They state from where to where....... does anyone know what the distance was and how much the fare should normally be????

However far it was with TEN people in the tuk tuk it was only 30 or 40 baht each, even for a short distance reasonable price.

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Appears most people are overlooking the fare being requested. 400thb for 1 kilometer. Compare that with elsewhere in Thailand. Did I not read somewhere that the deputy PM has vowed to stop this?

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What for pure Guy's travelling around the Globe for fighting for 3.5$ .........are there no better Things to do in Holiday as this .......

You are exactly right. So what do you propose as the correct limit that a tourist should stand firm about? $35? $350? You realize, of course, that if you somehow managed to get every tourist to follow your advice, then soon every tourist will be overcharged by whatever amount you've deemed as acceptable. My understanding is that some tourists feel they should set the limit at whatever was agreed. They won't cheat the seller, and in turn they expect to also not be cheated. (And further, do you think the tourist really expected to be physically assaulted over $3.50? A ride on licensed public transportation is not supposed to be handled the same way as a mugging.)

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Ten people in a Tuk-Tuk ?? Have never been to Phuket and maybe they use something different than Bangkok, but have never seen more than 5-6 in a Tuk-Tuk here!! Six or seven babies plus adults???? 1zgarz5.gif

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Can't wait for this delegation of consuls,TAT and the BiB to have this conference/meeting soon...back to normality within a week of the boys from Bangkok going back...same bloody same!!!coffee1.gif

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from the news article "However, as assault against a tourist is a non-compoundable offense under the Thai Criminal Code, it cannot be privately resolved between the parties concerned." Does anyone know if this has been previously utilised by the Thai Courts.

Seems a fair sentence to me, so long as it's a first offence. From reading the report, it's more like the tourist was the <deleted>, but violence is uncalled for.

Edited by simple1
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