British Backpackers Arrested for Passing Fake Pound Sterling Banknotes in Koh Pangan, Thailand
SURAT THANI – Pol Col Somchai Noppasri, commander of Koh Phangan police, has reported that police arrested four Britons, identified as Thomas Anthony, Adam Lewis, Bradley Stephen and Luke Anthony, were apprehended at a rented house in Ban Tai Sub-district of Koh Pangan for using counterfeit pound sterling banknotes.
The police seized 96 fake £20 notes, which would be worth around 86,000 baht, and 2.11 grams of dried marijuana.
Koh Pangan Provincial Police Commander, Pol Col Somchai Noppasri said the arrest was made after Mrs. Wanpen Sriwisai, a tour operator, notified police that a group of young foreign tourists duped her and other tour operators with fake pounds sterling notes.
The four Britons have been charged with having and using forged foreign banknotes and possession of an illegal substance.
Pol Col Somchai Noppasri said the Foreign Office will also been notified with regards to the counterfeit pound sterling banknotes. Possession and distribution of counterfeit money carries a maximum 10 year sentence in the United Kingdom.
Meanwhile in Bangkok Thai police have shut down a factory in Bangkok that was churning out fake bills.
Pol Maj Gen Sommai Kongwisaisuk, deputy commissioner of the Central Investigation Bureau, led a team of police officers to Bang Khen to raid a counterfeit money factory.
During the raid, the police found printing plates used to produce and churn out bogus Thai baht, US dollars, and Laotian kip. Along with the fake notes, the police also confiscated firearms and a vehicle.
Two suspects have been taken into custody for questioning.
According to Pol Maj Gen Sommai, the bust followed an intelligence report from the US government. At present, the damage has yet to be assessed.
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