A group of Pattaya municipal police have been suspended amid allegations they extorted hefty bribes from Jomtien Beach masseuses to fund a New Year’s party.
Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome ordered an investigative panel to immediately probe the complaints brought by the beach vendors, who claimed the regulatory-enforcement officers known as “tessakit” in Thai, demanded 20,000 baht each from them.
The masseuses balked, complaining that sum was four times the amount in bribes they historically paid to city hall during the holidays. However, the complainants said those who refused to pay were arrested on made up charges on “the boss’s orders”.
Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh, who is overseeing the investigation, did not disclose how many officers are involved in the scandal, but said that, if found guilty, they not only will be fired, but will also face criminal charges as well.