Loy Krathong Pickpocket Gang Arrested

 | Mon 30 Nov 2015 05:11 ICT

CityNews – Police arrested a Pickpocket gang who had travelled from Bangkok to steal from tourists celebrating the Loy Krathong festivals between November 24 – 26.


Police arrested the suspects on November 27. They were identified as Suradet Mokpha, 36, from Bangkok, Thepprakorn Champasee, 25, from Nakhon Ratchasima, Preeyaporn Sai-ngam-iam, 42, from Bangkok, and a 17-year-old girl (name withheld), from Bangkok.

Police seized 35 stolen items including credit cards, discount coupons, ID cards, cash and mobile phones.

During the festival, Chiang Mai police received many reports of stolen items from both Thai and foreign tourists, most of which were reportedly pickpocketed near the Nawarat Bridge.

As a result, undercover police were sent to patrol in the area.

One of the victims was 45-year-old William Thomas Bush, a man based at the U.S. Consulate. His bag, containing his wallet and documents, were stolen. He then alerted police and pointed out two Thai men who were acting suspicious. Police followed them until they met a woman and a girl on the riverbank, and arrested them.

Police discovered all the stolen items in the possession of members of the group.

Suradet confessed that after he was released from jail (he had been jailed on drug charges), he met Thepprakorn. Suradet was unemployed, so he convinced Thepprakorn and his girlfriend (the 17-year-old girl) and Preeyaporn (mother of the girl) to pickpocket tourists during the Loy Krathong festival, targeting Chiang Mai as it was crowded by many Thai and foreign tourists.

They had travelled to Chiang Mai on a free train and stayed in the town.

They also planned to pickpocket in other provinces; however, they were arrested before they moved on.