Police are still reported to be investigating the activities of 34-year-old Benjamin Robert Simpson even after his arrest in Hua Hin this week based on a deportation order made against him following a serious incident linked with drugs and illegal firearms on Ko Samui in February.
The boss of the Immigration Bureau this week announced the arrest of a 34-year-old British man who officers believe poses a risk to others in the kingdom and is the subject of a deportation order. Ben Simpson was arrested in early February after a day of terrorising locals on Ko Samui with a speedboat and two illegal handguns. Police Lieutenant General Sompong Chingduang, at a press conference with senior officers, also revealed that he had orders from Prime Minister Prayut Chan ocha and Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan to crackdown on foreigners in Thailand who threaten the peace and posed a risk to others.
Immigration Bureau police in Prachuap Khiri Khan have rearrested a 34-year old British man who was taken into custody by police on Ko Samui in early February when found to be in possession of drugs and firearms after a day spent at sea terrorising the coastal community near the Four Seasons Hotel in the Ang Thong area of the island.
Details of this week’s arrest by police were given by Lieutenant General Sompong Chingduang and other senior officers of the force who described the British man, reportedly an officer linked with public charity, as a danger to the public in Thailand.
In February, the British man faced serious criminal charges including Class 1 drug distribution as well as the possession and use of illegal firearms
The man was named by police on Ko Samui in February as 34-year-old Mr Benjamin Robert Simpson.
Earlier this year, Mr Simpson was reported to be facing very serious charges which could have left him facing anything from 10 years in prison to the death penalty after police on Ko Samui decided to throw the book at him in legal proceedings.
UK man on a tourist visa arrested for offshore gun terror and serious drug charges on Ko Samui after a day out
This was after 6.85 grams of crystal methamphetamine were found in a bedroom of the Four Season Hotel which police raided on Thursday the 4th of February last.
The quantity was sufficient to see him charged with the distribution of type 1 narcotics in addition to firearm offences after a day of terror for frightened locals spent by the UK man and a younger companion enjoying a speed boat excursion while continuously discharging ammunition rounds from two 9mm handguns.
Arrested by armed police unit in a luxury room at the Four Seasons Hotel in Ko Samui’s Ang Thong district
When arrested by armed police officers dispatched to the area later that evening, the two firearms, an illegally held Beretta and a revolver, together with ammunition, were found in the bedroom of the luxury hotel which Mr Simpson had been sharing with 22-year-old Mr Geerati Glinubol, the driver of the speedboat involved in the day of high jinks at sea.
Drugs paraphernalia was also seized and held by police as evidence.
This led to serious legal proceedings against Mr Simpson being drawn up by police including charges of distributing a Class 1 drug as well as illegal possession and use of firearms.
It is understood that after the case against him was brought before the court, Mr Simpson then disappeared.
Legal proceedings against Mr Simpson on Ko Samui were finalised but police ordered his deportation
The Immigration Bureau boss, General Sompong, also known as ‘Big Oud’, revealed that the initial legal proceedings in February on Ko Samui had been finalised.
Police later issued an order for him to be deported from Thailand on the basis that his temperament and character posed a risk to the public.
Simpson was arrested this week at the Hua Na Market in Hua Hin in Prachuap Khiri Khan after police tracked down his whereabouts to the resort town which is quite popular with affluent foreigners in Thailand.
In February, it was reported that the British man was quite well off being also involved in cryptocurrency trading although police, this week, emphasised that his primary basis for being in Thailand was his links to a public charity as yet not named.
It is reported that police are still investigating Mr Simpson’s activities in Thailand as part of an ongoing probe.
Crackdown on foreigners using Thailand as a base for illegal activities ordered from the top says ‘Big Oud’
At this week’s press conference, the Immigration Bureau commander underlined the commitment of the force to protecting the kingdom from foreigners who may have the capacity to commit crimes here or use the country as a base for illegal activity.
He stressed that this was particularly important at this time as the kingdom’s borders need to be monitored to prevent people smuggling and human trafficking which poses a threat to the public and efforts to defeat the COVID-19 virus.
He indicated that the Prime Minister, Prayut Chan ocha and Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan had recently ordered the force to redouble its activities in this regard.
He said this includes the tracking and monitoring of all foreigners involved in suspicious and inappropriate behaviour which may have the potential to disturb the peace in the kingdom as well as the safety of lives and property.
Public encouraged to report suspicious activity
He drew attention to the Bureau’s 1178 hotline for members of the public wishing to report such foreigners as well as inviting anyone with information to contact the Immigration Bureau headquarters in the Sathorn area of Bangkok.
The Immigration Bureau chief made it clear that police were determined to push out such undesirable elements from the kingdom.
The announcement comes as Thailand is preparing to reopen more provinces of the country from November 1st next including plans now scheduled for January 2022 to reopen key land borders.
Crackdown on illegal foreigners sees American teacher arrested in class and Russian at his restaurant lunch
Similar crackdowns have been a feature of policing in Thailand since 2015 when the junta government, supported by Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan, pushed a campaign to toughen security measures against undesirable foreigners who were seen by the top brass at the Royal Thai Police as increasingly active in drug distribution, online fraud and human trafficking.
Number of visitors entering Thailand since April 2020 slows to a trickle. Many have left due to the pandemic
However, since April 2020, the number of foreigners entering Thailand has slowed to a trickle of that which was seen before.
Overall, the number of foreign nationals in the kingdom has dropped since then due to the contraction of the economy and the challenging environment caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Time up for some long-stay business owners as immigration warns of arrests after Saturday’s deadline
Earlier this month, the Metropolitan Police Bureau in Bangkok issued a warning to foreign nationals in Thailand, not to become involved in ongoing violent street protests in the city involving young people challenging the police particularly near the Din Daeng area of the city.
Foreigners involved in protests face deportation
Police Major General Piya Tawichai, the Deputy Chief of the force, warned that any foreigner found involved in such activity would face deportation from Thailand and also be blacklisted from the kingdom.
The move followed the arrest of a Cambodian national among 195 detained as part of a violent disturbance on the 8th of September when ping pong bombs and fireworks were thrown at police.
Police Major General Piya warned that involvement in such protest activity was a violation of both the Emergency Decree and the Communicable Disease Act 2015.
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