Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Farang Fraudster or Beggar - Thong Lor

At Christmas time in 2008 I was at Thong Lor BTS station withdrawing some cash out of an ATM. I can remember it well. As I was taking the cash from the dispenser a white guy walked up to me and engaged me in conversation.

I was immediately suspicious ( as is my nature ) and was on my guard. He wanted to know the way to Pattaya. I explained his best bet would be to go to Ekkamai and get the bus. He asked me how he should get there and I said it was just one stop away on the BTS. He promptly asked me for the fare as he did not have enough money because he had left his travellers cheques in Pattaya. He would reimburse me later if I gave him my bank details !

I declined in no uncertain terms and walked away.

Now, today, the same guy came up to me again ! This time I was waiting for a friend
on the corner of Sukhumvit 36 and Suk Road ( Thong Lor ). I recognised him straight away but he clearly didn't recognise me.

This time he asked me where he could cash some travellers cheques. I was laughing inside and told him to get the BTS to Phrom Phong and go to the currency exchange booths there. He felt in his pockets and said he didn't have the fare and could I help him out with a hundred baht. I burst into laughter and 'politely' told him to walk.

So he did.

He was white, about 40 - 45 years old, 6ft tall, medium build and spoke with an American accent. He was reasonably dressed.

Has anyone else experienced similar ?

3 comments:

  1. Anonymous8:28 PM

    The money seems too small to bother with, so probably this is a stepping stone to a bigger scam.

    The small request is both a screening tool for finding gullible people as well as a persuasion technique for getting somebody to give in to larger requests.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Think I know this guy. He came to me when I was sitting on the balcony of O'Reilly's in Thaniya Plaza a few years ago and asked me for a few hundred baht. I refused and he got quite argumentative - telling me how stingy I was not to help a guy out. Then I saw him again earlier this year. He stopped for a beer at We4You bar (not that kind of bar) in Soi 8 and was clearly looking around trying to make a connection with other customers. He didn't recognise me. Same description as yours.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Think I know this guy. He came to me when I was sitting on the balcony of O'Reilly's in Thaniya Plaza a few years ago and asked me for a few hundred baht. I refused and he got quite argumentative - telling me how stingy I was not to help a guy out. Then I saw him again earlier this year. He stopped for a beer at We4You bar (not that kind of bar) in Soi 8 and was clearly looking around trying to make a connection with other customers. He didn't recognise me. Same description as yours.

    ReplyDelete