Belgian loses watch to foreign grifter

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Belgian tourist Jean Mubert files a robbery report with deputy inspector, Pol. Capt. Thanin Kanpai at Pattaya police station against Waqar Ahmad (inset).
Belgian tourist Jean Mubert files a robbery report with deputy inspector, Pol. Capt. Thanin Kanpai at Pattaya police station against Waqar Ahmad (inset).

A Belgian tourist said he was robbed by a Middle Eastern man he befriended in a Jomtien restaurant and took back to his hotel room.

Jean Mubert filed a police complaint against Waqar Ahmad July 2, a day before he was scheduled to leave Thailand and four days after the Middle Eastern expat in his mid-20s allegedly stole his new Calvin Klein watch and held it ransom for 5,000 baht.

Mubert said after meeting Ahmad at an Indian restaurant he invited him back to the Jomtien Complex Resort and Spa for a swim. Afterward they planned to go to dinner, so the Belgian had his new friend come up to his hotel room.

While he showered, Mubert said Ahmad stole the 10,800-baht watch and left.

The Belgian contacted Ahmad via a messaging app and the suspect offered to return the timepiece for 5,000 baht. Mubert refused. He said Ahmad messaged him again several times begging for the money, but the victim instead went to police. He also went to the watch store to warn them that the Middle Easterner might try to return it for a refund.

Mubert said he didn’t expect to get the watch back before he left on July 3, but filed the police report as a warning to other tourists. He said he spoke to others at a Jomtien bar who recognized Ahmad and said he often targets tourists, inviting them for dinner and drinks before robbing them.