Ban threat for teen in rape case

Ban threat for teen in rape case

Police say this sign will not apply to the 19-year-old woman from England who claims she was raped on the island in late June.
Police say this sign will not apply to the 19-year-old woman from England who claims she was raped on the island in late June.

Police have threatened to blacklist a 19-year-old British girl and deny her entry to Thailand indefinitely if she fails to counter investigators' findings that her rape claim on Koh Tao is groundless.

Having contacted London police, via the British Embassy, to question the girl, Thai officers expected it would take about a month to receive her account and evidence to back up her complaint, deputy Tourist Police chief Surachate Hakparn said on Sunday.

"We are waiting for her testimony," he said, insisting the investigators will treat the case in a fair manner to avoid making a one-sided conclusion. However, Pol Maj Gen Surachate, known as Big Joke, said evidence gathered so far did not support what the girl had told the British media about the incident on the island on June 25.

The Sun newspaper reported on August 23 that the woman claimed she was drugged, stripped, robbed and subjected to a nightmarish sex ordeal on Koh Tao. She then went to Phangan before returning to Koh Tao to file a complaint with police, whom she accused of refusing to investigate her rape allegation while noting only details of the robbery.

Police will consider her statement again but if "her words are not true, we need to press a charge against her on a false complaint, blacklist her and prohibit her from entering Thailand indefinitely," Pol Maj Gen Surachate said.

Police need to treat the issue carefully because some foreign tourists fabricated stories in order to claim insurance, he said.

So far there have been at least four cases in connection with false complaints -- two on Koh Tao, one on Koh Samui and the other on Krabi mainland, according to Pol Maj Gen Surachate. Police are taking legal action against the complainants, including informing the Immigration Bureau to put their names on the blacklist.

The officers are aware that Thailand is a popular tourist destination and revenue brought by foreigners is crucial to the country's economy, but it is also important to tighten screening. Up to 35 million travellers come to Thailand each year, making it one of the world's top destinations. "We must separate quality tourists from the bad ones," he said.

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Vocabulary

  • account: a spoken or written report about something that has happened - รายงานข่าว
  • allegation: an accusation; a statement that someone has done something wrong or illegal even though this has not been proved - ข้อกล่าวหา
  • blacklist (verb): to put the name of a person, a company, a product or a country on a blacklist (a list of the names of people, companies, products or countries that an organization or a government considers unacceptable and that must be avoided) - ใส่ในบัญชีรายชื่อของคนที่ทำไม่ดี
  • complainant (noun): a person who makes a formal complaint - ผู้ร้อง(ทุกข์)
  • crucial (adj): extremely important because it effects the result of something - สำคัญยิ่ง
  • fabricate: to invent or produce something false in order to deceive - สร้างข้อมูลหรือเรื่องราวที่ไม่เป็นความจริง
  • file a complaint: to make an official statement that someone has done something wrong - ยื่นคำร้อง
  • indefinitely: for a period of time with no fixed end - ไม่มีข้อกำหนด
  • nightmarish (adj): making you feel very angry, upset, or frightened เหมือน ฝันร้าย - เหมือนฝันร้าย
  • ordeal: an extremely unpleasant experience, especially one that lasts for a long time - ประสบการณ์ที่แสนสาหัส
  • screening: the testing or examining of a large number of people or things for disease, faults, illegal objects, etc - การตรวจ
  • testimony: a formal statement about something that you say, know or experienced, usually given to a court of law - คำให้การ
  • tighten (verb): to make something tighter, more fixed and secure or stricter - ทำให้แน่น, ทำให้เข้มงวดยิ่งขึ้น, ทำให้แน่นหรือตึงขึ้น, ผูกให้แน่น,

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