PHUKET – A British man who claimed he was robbed at gunpoint and had his legs broken in Thailand has been accused of faking a fundraising page to get home.
Mr. Mik Laverty travelled to Phuket to celebrate his 50th birthday with wife Denise but says he was attacked on the first day of the holiday.
However Thai police say the incident never happened and Mik actually jumped off a hotel balcony, which is why his legs were broken.
Mr Laverty, from Newton Aycliffe in Durham, said he was injured during a mugging in a marketplace last Thursday, while his wife popped into a bar to use the toilet.
The couple set up a fundraising page reportedly asking for £10,000 “to get them home” and to pay for medical expenses.
They amassed almost £1,000 in the first 24 hours, according to reports.
However police said CCTV taken in the early hours of Friday morning shows Mr Laverty walking in the corridor of a hotel in Patong.
In the footage, he tries a couple of doors before entering a room, where police say he threw himself off a balcony, falling 20ft into the street below.
Captain Ekkachai Siri of the Phuket Tourist Police told the Phuket News: “Staff heard him screaming and ran to help.
“They called a rescue team which soon arrived and took him to Patong Hospital.”
Officers carried out an initial interview in hospital and are believed to have become suspicious when Mr Laverty asked for a police report for insurance purposes.
When they returned to interview him again he fled the country on a plane to Dubai, police reported.