PHUKET – The White Room Night Club in Patong, Phuket has fired 5 of its security staff after a confrontation with six Australian tourists.
Police say they are looking for two Australian men and that they plan to summon five nightclub security guards for questioning over a video posted on Facebook that shows guards viciously kicking and punching two tourists in the latest attack on foreigners on the Thai resort island of Phuket.
The 48 seconds of footage has attracted more than 75,000 views and it shows black-clothed guards repeatedly kicking the defenseless men.
One guard is seen elbowing one of the men in the head.
Bystanders appear to ask the guards to stop the attack as one of the men was lying on concrete outside a club in Phuket’s Patong tourist area, trying to protect his head from kicks.
Attacks on foreigners in island resort areas like Phuket and Koh Samui reveal the dark belly of Thailand’s tourism that accounts for 10 per cent of the country’s economy.
Security guards in Patong are notoriously prone to violence, particularly towards foreign troublemakers in clubs, expatriate residents say.
Australian consular officials estimate that about 80 per cent of the cases in which Australians find themselves in trouble are settled before they hear about them, often through extorted payments.
Melbourne youth Jack Hansen-Bartel’s life has turned into a nightmare after he was bashed in a club on Koh Samui.
The injuries were so serious he has required multiple operations, including plastic surgery, after his teeth were knocked out and his jaw bone shattered.
Two American students have been charged over the alleged assault but counter-charges have been laid against Mr Hansen-Bartel, raising questions about Thailand’s justice system. Mr Hansen-Bartel will face court later this year.
The Phuket Gazette reports that police have investigated the latest Phuket attack and that charges are pending.
It says security guards on Phuket are not required to undergo training as are those in Western countries like Australia.
By Lindsay Murdoch, Kongleaphy Keam