BANGKOK: Hanging out a bar and willing to discuss personal visa matters with a total stranger? Then watch out for guys like this who have for many many years successfully scammed foreigners desperate for visas and work permits out of hundreds of thousands if not millions of baht. In this case the guy has been nabbed in the case of two separate foreigners who decided to file charges. But the perpetrator has a long record which seems to indicate he’s just paying someone else off to get out of the deeper trouble when it comes.
BANGKOK — A Thai man was arrested for impersonating a lawyer to scam foreigners wanting permanent residency or work permits, police said Thursday.
Pairoj Kanchanarat, 50, was detained in Nonthaburi province and charged with fraud after two foreigners filed police complaints. They said they were tricked into paying him tens of thousands of baht as he claimed he could secure visas for them, according to immigration chief Maj. Gen. Surachet Hakpan.
Police said the American victim paid 25,000 baht for a permanent resident permit, while his Italian friend lost 49,000 baht for a work permit after Pairoj approached them in February in a Bangkok bar.
Pairoj’s arrest warrant was issued on Monday, Surachet said.
He said Pairoj used this method to scam foreigners for about 10 years and had been charged with fraud seven times in Bangkok, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Nakhon Ratchasima and Chiang Mai provinces.
Pairoj would approach victims in popular places among foreigners claiming to be a lawyer or government official who could get them the permits without undergoing the normal process, according to Surachet.