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849/59-61 Chula Soi 6, Bantadtong Road, Pratumwan
July 30, 2002
I got suckered into the gem scam on Saturday. Yesterday (Sunday) I went back to the store and negotiated for a refund. I managed to get 71% (of 144,000 Baht) back. The tourist police were helpful in advising me to go to the airport (particularly the mail centre) to stop the outgoing mail.
The name of the store is Siam. The address is 849/59-61 CHULA SOI 6 BANTADTONG RD, PHATUMWAN, BANGKOK.
I understand this store had previously been closed down. I hope it can be closed again very soon. It would be a pity if victims took revenge into their own hands, rather than the police fulfilling this function. Vigilante justice is something that Thailand does not need to have.
I took some digital photographs of a few of those involved. The scam involved the tuk-tuk driver (well, a sort-of tuk-tuk overlord/arranger/choreographer who hangs out on Khao San Rd). His is the first photo. He mentioned the 'government expo' and that it had been on TV. He told our driver to take us to a particular temple (Jade Buddha), and initiated the proceedings. The nice man at the temple claimed to be a tax lawyer. The next photo is of the manager called upon when I asked for a refund. He played 'bad-cop'. I didn't get a photo of the older guy who played 'good-cop'. They were good negotiators, using not just good cop-bad cop, but also the tactic of "resorting to higher authority". It was only when I credibly threatened to wait in their showroom that I got somewhere with the negotiations. They did give me a cash refund, and despite earlier denials, did have it all the cash on the premises.
The tuk-tuk driver
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