Russian and Thai arrested for counterfeit Euro scheme in Pattaya

Police arrested a Russian national and seized fake euro banknotes totalling 6,500 euros (approximately 253,500 baht). (Inset) Hassapol Rodnikorn was arrested after exchanging a counterfeit Euro banknote at an currency exchange booth in Jomtien.

PATTAYA, Thailand – A man was arrested after he exchanged counterfeit banknotes at a currency exchange booth in Soi 5, Pratumnak Road in Jomtien. Hassapol Rodnikorn, a hotel receptionist, claimed he received a 500-euro note as a deposit from a Russian guest at the hotel where he worked.

Police subsequently located the 29-year-old Russian national and searched his belongings, uncovering 5 banknotes of 500 Euro denomination and 80 banknotes of 50 Euro denominations, totalling 6,500 euros (approximately 253,500 baht). The Russian confessed to possessing the counterfeit euros.

Hassapol Rodnikorn explained that he exchanged the 500-euro note at a currency exchange booth for 19,012 baht, believing it to be genuine. The Russian guest, allegedly owing more than 7,000 baht after staying over three weeks, settled part of the debt with the counterfeit note.

Ms. Kornpassorn Janpromsri, manager of the currency exchange booth, revealed her staff discovered the counterfeit nature of the 500-euro note after the exchange. She promptly reported the incident to Dong Tan Police Substation in Jomtien, noting a previous fraud case involving similar counterfeit notes earlier this year.

Further investigation unveiled that the serial numbers on the counterfeit notes matched those from previous incidents, suggesting a connection. The Russian national admitted the counterfeit euros originated from Turkey and acknowledged receiving a commission for their exchange.

Chonburi Immigration Police charged the Russian national with overstaying his visa and possessing counterfeit foreign currency. Hassapol Rodnikorn faced charges for possession of counterfeit foreign currency. Both suspects were transferred to Pattaya City Police for continued legal proceedings.