The Royal Thai Police (RTP) have warned parents to protect their children and prevent them from being deceived into sending sexually explicit images and videos to trade as "gifts" related to online gaming.
National police chief Suwat Jangyodsuk has instructed officers to track down all wrongdoers and keep the public informed about their progress, said deputy spokesman Pol Col Siriwat Deephor.
A police probe revealed that a number of minors have been tricked into sending sexually explicit videos of themselves in exchange for in-game items while playing online games.
The suspects then used these to extort the minors to obtain more sexual content. If the victims failed to comply, the suspects threatened to leak the previously acquired videos on social media or forward it to the minors' teachers and friends.
Pol Col Siriwat said the perpetrators, when apprehended, would face charges related to the sexual exploitation and abuse of minors, among other crimes.
Under Section 287/1 of the Criminal Code, possessing child pornography for sexual exploitation carries a maximum term of up to five years in jail and/or a fine of up to 100,000 baht.
Those who give child pornography to others can be jailed for up to seven years and/or receive a fine of up to 140,000 baht.
Moreover, coercing others by threatening their life, reputation or property and depriving them of their freedom carries a maximum term of three years in jail and/or a fine of up to 60,000 baht under Section 309 of the code.
Extortion also carries maximum term of five years in jail and/or a fine of up to 100,000 baht under Section 337.