Russian tourist fined over assault
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Russian tourist fined over assault

Woman was angered by shop owner's request to remove her shoes

Koh Samui Provincial Court (Photo: Koh Samui Provincial Court Facebook)
Koh Samui Provincial Court (Photo: Koh Samui Provincial Court Facebook)

A Russian tourist who kicked a pregnant shop owner in Koh Phangan has been fined 500 baht and given a suspended 15-day jail sentence.

Immigration authorities in Surat Thani are considering whether her visa will be revoked due to the criminal offence.

Alena Kupriyanova, 41, admitted to kicking the shop owner, who is eight months pregnant, on Monday in frustration after the latter asked her to take off her shoes before entering the shop.

The shop owner decided to press charges to prevent such an incident from happening again. Kupriyanova claimed she was menstruating that day, which had affected her mood. Her Thai visa was said to be valid until May 22.

The incident was the latest in a string of reports of tourists behaving badly. Interior Minister Anutin Charnvirakul downplayed public concerns over a perceived increase in such incidents, adding that foreigners who break Thailand’s laws will be prosecuted.

He cited the case this week in which two New Zealand brothers were prosecuted and subsequently lost their visas after assaulting a police officer in Phuket.

Visa revocation, he said, is decided on a case-by-case basis and not that every foreigner who breaks the law will end up being deported.

According to statistics compiled by the Royal Thai Police from last October until this month, 614 foreigners faced legal action for committing a crime in Thailand, and 98 were deported as a consequence.

In many cases, police said these foreigners had been prosecuted for using nominees to hold shares on their behalf in a company set up with a hidden agenda to offer work permits to other foreigners.

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