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HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

City and police adopt aggressive baht bus policy

Banglamung district chief conducts his own night beat

EEI chosen as (interim) manager of Pattaya’s wastewater treatment plant

Distraught woman charged with drunk and disorderly conduct

Armed robbers slit throat of Pattaya Mail’s neighbor

Elderly Brit caught naked in bed with 12-year-old boy

Bangsaen ready to charge for wastewater treatment

PEACH hosts 44th National Municipal League of Thailand Conference

City and police adopt aggressive baht bus policy

To eliminate 40 illegal baht buses every month

Veerachai Somchart

The city announced new policies and plans with hopes of implementing driver discipline in the city’s baht bus scheme. Illegal parking, erratic driving and discourteous behavior will be targeted, and with police help, the city has set a target of getting rid of 40 renegade baht buses every month.

Mayor Pairat Suttithamrongsawat addressed the annual Pattaya Transportation Cooperative conference and announced new plans to reign in the growing baht bus problem.

The new plans were announced during the annual Pattaya Transportation Cooperative conference held at the Grand Sole’ Hotel on May 25.

Pattaya mayor Pairat Suttithamrongsawat and Pattaya highway police inspector Pol. Capt. Somchai Pongsai attended, along with 700 co-op members and the chairman of the transportation cooperative’s board of directors, Suthap Sukkhochai.

Mayor Pairat told the conference that plans and policy changes were about to take place once the city police revert to the city’s control. The mayor referred to the long awaited corrective action needed in the city’s baht bus transportation scheme, specifically identifying illegal parking, erratic driving and discourteous behavior.

Pattaya Beach Road, 2nd and 3rd Roads, and all connecting routes will be mapped out into clearly identified routes with fares conveniently posted for tourists to recognize. The mayor requested the transportation co-op’s support in complying with new the policies.

Pol. Capt. Somchai added that members of the city police assessment committee have expressed concern over the urgent need to organize the baht buses operating in Pattaya. He said a survey is currently in progress to identify suitable baht bus stops. He said he expects the survey to be completed by the end of June.

Whilst asking for the transportation co-op’s assistance in accepting the changes to come, Pol. Capt. Somchai outlined a plan to support the co-op by implementing action to eliminate the many illegal baht buses (black plates) operating in Pattaya, which are taking business away from registered drivers.

He said on the 15th of every month his office intends to report actions taken against the renegade drivers, with the initial target of arresting 40 drivers illegally operating each month.

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Banglamung district chief conducts his own night beat

Goes home empty handed - it must be hell to be famous

Boonlua Chatree

How would you like it if you got all your cronies together and headed out for a night of "raiding" sex show bars only to have every one of them slam and lock their doors as soon as they saw you coming? That is exactly what happened to Banglamung district chief Vichien Chawalit on Monday, May 28.

Banglamung district chief Vichien Chawalit (center) and his crime busting buddies failed to see even one naked body on their night out raiding bars.

The district chief, escorted by district security officers and a group of crime prevention volunteers from the district, conducted a late night tour of Pattaya’s night scene intending to find lewd entertainment after hearing reports that sex shows, entertaining tours from China, were operating in various Pattaya bars.

The district chief and his crew hit the streets at 11 p.m., making their first stop at the Pattaya Show in North Pattaya, but hopes were dashed when the place was found locked up and it was discovered that the notorious showplace had closed for the night just moments before the district chief arrived.

Not yet discouraged, the crew proceeded to better haunts of ill fame, stopping at a spot aptly named the Sin Show, but it too had just closed for the night.

Still not discouraged the crew moved on to the Show Girl, a popular place recently busted for busty entertainment. The Show Girl, located opposite Alcazar on 2nd Road, was still open but as soon the district chief and his crew entered and exposed themselves, the disgusted manager stopped the show and announced that everyone must leave the premises. The steady stream of Chinese tourists, hiding their eyes from the overzealous district chief and his crew, poured out of Show Girl preventing the district chief and his crew from picking up any suspects.

Putting a beautifully bureaucratic twist on the affair, the district chief later said that the impromptu early closing of each venue made it obvious that illegal entertainment was still operating in Pattaya (even though he, disappointedly, didn’t get to see any of it). He said the late night inspections would continue and any business found presenting sexually explicit content will be shut down while performers and managers would be remanded to police custody and interrogated by the crusading district chief.

Perhaps the District Chief would have better luck if he went on the Nite Beat Show with Dr. Iain?

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EEI chosen as (interim) manager of Pattaya’s wastewater treatment plant

Company bids lacked transparency

Veerachai Somchart

Pattaya City administrators, having neither the expertise nor manpower to run Pattaya’s new wastewater treatment plant, decided to contract out the job to a private company.

In mid April, city administrators set the bidding for the water treatment plant concession at 12 million baht. Five companies showed interest in managing Pattaya’s 1.8 billion baht wastewater treatment plant, and on May 4 city officials opened those company’s sealed bids.

On June 1, the names of the five companies and their bids were revealed. At that time, the city also disclosed that there may have been a lack of transparency in some of the bids.

The bids for the chance to manage the operation of the city’s wastewater treatment plant were (in ascending order): East Water Company 9.2 million baht, Environment and Energy International (EEI) Co., Ltd 9.9 million baht, Global Utilities Services Ltd. 11.6 million baht, BJT Water Co., Ltd. 12 million baht and Green Engineering Co. Ltd., 16 million baht.

During the initial review of the bids on May 4, no complaints were received; however, on May 9, the mayor was contacted by a member of the board of directors at EEI, Saiyan Thiparat, who said that two of the five companies submitting bids were in violation of the Office of the Prime Minister’s contract regulation. EEI, the second lowest bidder, pointed out to the mayor that the lowest bidder, East Water, and the third lowest bidder, Global Utilities, were in fact companies in the same corporation. The notice suggested that in light of the new information the bids should be reconsidered.

City hall investigated the allegations and discovered that Mrs. Anchalee Chawanich, currently the director of the Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand, is indeed the chairperson of the board of directors of both East Water and Global Utilities. The city at that time decided to award the contract to EEI.

Then, on May 22, the mayor received another notice, this time from the director of technical administration at BJT Water, implying that EEI did not meet the qualifications to manage the plant as stipulated in the conditions and requirements previously provided to prospective bidders.

City administrators have now contacted the Thai Embassy in Japan and have asked for confirmation that EEI does indeed have past experience in managing the operation of wastewater treatment plants in Japan.

In the interim, EEI remains the winner of the contract, which was signed on May 22.

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Distraught woman charged with drunk and disorderly conduct

Enraged over broken love offair

Boonlua Chatree

Residents of the Hakhone Condo on Thepprasit Road caught quite a show on May 27. However, it was not one they wanted to catch.

Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned... Suphan Nakhun was busily destroying her apartment before police were able to calm her down.

Thirty-two year old Miss Suphan Nakhun had gone into a drunken rage, and by the time police arrived she was busily destroying belongings inside her apartment and throwing other items out the window, which were smashing to the ground 5 floors below.

Police stood outside, knocking on her door for a while before she allowed them in. Once inside, officers had a bit of a struggle containing the enraged woman.

In time, she allowed police to escort her to the station where she was given a room to recover from her inebriated condition.

Miss Suphan eventually told police of her, "shattered expectations destroyed by her chosen life partner," who she refused to identify by name, although she often referred to the person as a good for nothing parasite.

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Armed robbers slit throat of Pattaya Mail’s neighbor

Storeowner stabbed whilst resisting robbery

Boonlua Chatree

Miss Em-orn Khanitawan, the 36-year old owner of the "Flinstone’s Store", a small convenience store on 2nd Road next door to the Pattaya Mail offices and less than 50 meters from the tourist police station, had her throat slit whilst resisting a robbery attempt in her store on June 2.

Ryt Sae-eung, 20, from Trat, and Warawut Budsaban, 20, an employee at Big C from Korat were arrested for robbing and slitting the throat of a convenience store owner.

Miss Em was rushed to Memorial Hospital. At press time, Miss Em was out of intensive care, but there was no further information about her condition. An 8-year-old boy was also injured during the robbery.

Ryt Sae-eung, 20, from Trat, and Warawut Budsaban, 20, an employee at Big C from Korat were arrested before dark on the same say at a rented room on North Pattaya Road.

When police burst into their room, the two thugs were counting out the stolen money before heading out of the city on the next bus. Police found the knife in the room, along with blood stained clothing and 17,300 baht stolen from the market.

The two suspects admitted to police that when they saw Miss Em alone in the store on the quiet afternoon, they planned the robbery. They also told police incredulously that they "did not expect her to resist".

The two robbers said Miss Em refused to hand over the money in the cash register, so they put a knife to her throat. When she continued to resist, they slit her throat. At that instant, a boy entered the store, so they punched him in the face before grabbing the money from the cash register and running from the store.

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Elderly Brit caught naked in bed with 12-year-old boy

Police took photos, confiscated Crisco as evidence

Philip Vivian Thompson from Trehafod in the UK, who had just turned 62 on May 3 this year, was caught naked in bed with a 12-year-old boy.

UK national Philip Thompson was caught naked in bed with a 12-year-old boy.

Thompson’s neighbours had reported to police that they suspected Thompson of sexually abusing minors, as they often saw young boys being brought to his house.

Pattaya’s tourist police, led by Pol. Maj. Noradech Klomtuksing, staked out Thompson’s house, and on May 30 they observed an older Thai male delivering a young boy. As soon as reinforcements arrived, they raided the house.

When police burst inside, officers immediately started photographing the activities as evidence. At the time, Thompson was allegedly sodomizing the young boy. Thompson allegedly then began running in circles, looking for a place to hide.

The boy later told police how he was persuaded by an older Thai male to go see the foreigner, and he was told to do as the foreigner instructed. He said the man told him the foreigner would pay him well afterwards.

The boy said the foreigner told him to shower and then instructed him to the bed where the foreigner began applying the greasy substance. The boy said he didn’t resist because he feared the large man and was unsure what to expect.

Thompson was charged with sexually molesting a minor under the age of 15. The photos and the can of Crisco were recorded as evidence, along with the statements from the 12-year old boy. Thompson was later transferred to the Banglamung police station for further disposition.

Barry Kenyon, local correspondent for the British Embassy, told Pattaya Mail, "Lawyers acting for Mr Thompson obtained bail for him at Banglamung police station last Thursday (May 31). The matter is now in the hands of the public prosecutor."

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Bangsaen ready to charge for wastewater treatment

Charges to be added to water bills

Veerachai Somchart

Saensuk Municipal mayor Somchai Khunpluem (Kamnan Poh) on May 22 announced that the system is in place for Bangsaen to begin charging for wastewater treatment.

Saensuk Municipal Mayor Somchai Khunpluem (Kamnan Poh) announced that Bangsaen will begin charging for wastewater treatment.

The charges will be taken from meter readings at a rate of 2.50 baht for each cubic meter of water (one cubic meter = 1,000 liters). However, the Saensuk mayor said the initial charge to consumers would only be approximately 50%, or around one baht per cubic meter, with increases applied later. The water treatment cost is to be added to water bills starting June 1.

Since October 1999, water treatment plants located in the south and north areas of Saensuk Municipality have been under the control of the Wastewater Management Authority, a government enterprise in the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment. Costs of operating both plants average 15 million baht each month, which has been subsidized by the local municipal government and the Wastewater Management Authority.

The Saensuk mayor said the local government has been absorbing almost five million baht of each month’s 15 million baht cost to operate the two plants, with the balance covered by the Wastewater Management Authority.

"Community assistance in supporting the 800 million baht investment is crucial in order to continue efficient operation," Kamnan Poh said. He added that, "The additional cost would be worth the benefits," and that, "the costs to Thai consumers was comparably small compared to water treatment costs in other countries."

Kamnan Poh also said that Saensuk’s payment plan, "would lead the way for other communities in the province, such as Pattaya, Laem Chabang and Sriracha."

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PEACH hosts 44th National Municipal League of Thailand Conference

Chakrapong Akkaranant and Veerachai Somchart

Government officials from 1,129 municipalities assembled at the Pattaya Exhibition and Convention Hall (PEACH) in the Royal Cliff Beach Resort for the 44th National Municipal League of Thailand Conference held May 28-30.

The permanent secretary from the Ministry of Interior, Chanasak Yuwaboon opened the municipal assembly, welcoming more than 5,000 officials and employees from Thailand’s municipal level of government from around the nation.

Chonburi governor Sujarit Pachimnan and Pattaya mayor Pairat Suttithamrongsawat were amongst a host of notable figures from the eastern region in attendance.

Policies and changes in governing were the main topics of the seminar, and the main objective was to create more efficient functioning at the local level of government.

During the opening ceremony the permanent secretary presented awards of recognition to individuals and municipalities for outstanding achievement.

Minister Chanasak then reiterated policy statements concerning local government made by Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra to the council of ministers on February 26, emphasizing the urgent need to eliminate corruption, drug trafficking and poverty. He also referred to the government’s plan to relax farmers’ debts, and the million baht that will be allocated to each community plan, specifying that local communities would decide how to best allocate the funds to benefit their communities.

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