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Shakedown By Police At Ekamai Bus Terminal


houseinbkk

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After over 11 years of coming to Thailand i have never once been bothered by the police whilst just going about my business.

Then today i got off the bus at Ekamai with all my luggage, and the boys in brown about 10 of them shouted me over.

I asked them why and they said to search me, so as there wasnt really much i could do i went over.

He first started asking if i smoked which i didnt im presuming he was going to go for the cigarette butt scam.

So he then goes through my small rucksack, im a bit abrasive with them, then he went through my laptop bag again found nothing of interest, so he then starts trying to put his hands in my pocket where ive about 400GBP in bht and sterling, at this point i flared up a bit, got aggressive and said you arent having that i work for it. His friend says he just wants to see if anything is in it, so i take it out and show it and he's trying to grab it to look at it again i dont stand for it. There is a bit of a stand off then fortunately he just moves onto my suitcase.

After they see ive nothing or great interest im on my way.

Now is this shakedown for no reason crap a common occurrence, and did i do the right thing by flaring up as im presuming if i didnt id be a lot poorer then i am.

Bullying cowards the lot of them!

Edited by houseinbkk
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This is a well known place to get searched by the police. They're looking for things like Viagra or other controlled drugs without a valid prescription.

If you had any of these in your luggage they would have demanded money from you. This has been going on for years.

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Take a picture of the officer, show business card (given/acquired from a Thailand Lawyer) then immediately ring lawyer or British Embassy

You only EVER do the above if you are being stitched up ( ie they want money / planting evidence etc) This info was given to me by a VERY high ranking officer. Cant give first hand experience as it has never happened to me, hope it never will !!

Could work both ways though ! You could get into deeper shit BUT its a gamble that MAY make them back off ?

Just for your info........

Edited by metisdead
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Probably looking for drugs. I've been stopped and searched about half a dozen times in Bangkok. They usually go through everything. Pocket, wallet, they once took off my shoes and looked in them. Nothing ever happens, they thank me and go.

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Ever since a mate warned me about shakedowns at Ekkamai bus station in 1993, I have been dying for it to happen to me. Alas I must just look to clever for the coppers

Lucky the grammar police weren't there they wouldn't think you to be "too clever".

But from now on if I've any money in my pockets it'll be time to get off at On Nut!

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Probably looking for drugs. I've been stopped and searched about half a dozen times in Bangkok. They usually go through everything. Pocket, wallet, they once took off my shoes and looked in them. Nothing ever happens, they thank me and go.

I know its irrelevant as theyll do what they wish, but is it illegal to stop someone for no reason and search them?

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Hey, this isn't a western country with rules about illegal search and seizure. Come to think of it, those long-held rights have been eroded in the U.S. ever since 9/11. Maybe that's part of why I'm living in Thailand,

Anyway, remember you're at a bus terminal -- not the first class lounge of Thai Air. Dress a little better than the rest of crowd. Smile nicely when they ask to do a search and start taking photos, especially when they handle your money and documents. Keep up the light attitude. Maybe get someone to take photos of you with the BIB. After all, this is a new experience for you; something worth documenting. Consider yourself lucky if you've traveled before as a solo western male and never encountered a search.

Personally, the only hassles I've ever had was in returning to the U.S. was when I was grilled by U.S. officials like some sort of elderly drug marm because I'd been in Thailand for so long. They went over every item in my luggage, paying much more attention to the paperwork items than to the jewelry or liquor. I guess they thought I was running some sort of business operation.

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I have a very simple solution to ensure you will never be scammed or extorted by the BiB at any bus station in Thailand, as told to me by a very very senior police official....and comes with a money back guarantee.......

Stop taking the bus.....buy a car....:lol:

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In a weird way these police are being honestly corrupt…

It appears as though you will only ever get into difficulty if you are doing something wrong.

As another poster said – if you are carrying Viagra or some other prescribed drug without a prescription you could find yourself in a sticky situation.

The police are simply profiling: There are higher than normal odds that middle age Western men arriving in from Pattaya are carrying Viagra or some similar prescription drug without a prescription.

Those checked may well feel indignant and annoyed that their civil rights have been violated - there is not much we can do. Even though I wouldn’t like it, a search is fair enough, police search motorcyclists for drugs regularly too.

With regards to getting a little upset with the police. There is not a great deal wrong with that, so long as you don’t shout, call names or loose your cool excessively.

The Police can’t arrest us for being annoyed (so long as we don’t go too far). Just maintain a healthy balance of temperament, maintaining strength and firmness is fine and often plays well.

Showing excessive weakness also may present an opportunity for the police to attempt extortion.

These guys are the bottom of the police food chain (generally), they know it, they also know that many westerners bend over and take their extortion ‘sausage van up mud-lane style’…

What many westerners don’t do is show firm but polite resilience which initially make us easier targets.

The Op got a little irritated and faced down a situation in which he might otherwise have more easily been taken advantage of.

In this situation it appears as though the Police were running a legal check by simply profiling. The results of this check may be in question with possible / probable extortion should the person in question be in possession of anything legally questionable.

One Point: I have never heard of a situation in Thailand where the police have planted anything on a foreigner. With all the searches at Ekammai bus station, around Asoke and sukhumvit 22, no one on Thai Visa or any other forum has ever made accusations suggesting the police have planted something.

Another Point: IMO it is also fair enough to suggest that the police will rarely if ever search expensive cars. This is simply because they are scared of ‘connections’…. Poorer people: i.e. those on motorbikes, in pickups, delivery drivers, those using the bus are less likely to have connections and are therefore more susceptible to random or profiled searches. Like it or not, that’s the way it is in Thailand.

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B) Having lived in Thailand previously for a number of years and traveling to just about every part of Thailand by bus ,train, boat,and car have never been hassled by the Police.The only exception being the cigarette butt scam on Sukumvit. Once when I actually was guilty and another when they just grabbed me for no reason. In both instances I was able to bargain it down with a laugh and joke for a couple of hundred baht. The fact that I spoke passable Thai helped I'm sure.

I think its mainly how you carry yourself. I was never doing anything wrong, always had proper documentation. I also had contacts with very influential Thais and my Embassy. I left Thailand for good in 2007,so its possible that the situation has gotten worse.I was back last June, altough I was travelling around with my Thai wife and daughter. I have heard of many stories of "shakedowns" over the years, but have personally never experienced it myself. I have been aware of the problems at Ekamai Bus terminal and years ago took the bus to a conference at a convention in Chaochengsao and got off the bus at the BTS station at On Nut to avoid any problems.

LL

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B) Having lived in Thailand previously for a number of years and traveling to just about every part of Thailand by bus ,train, boat,and car have never been hassled by the Police.The only exception being the cigarette butt scam on Sukumvit. Once when I actually was guilty and another when they just grabbed me for no reason. In both instances I was able to bargain it down with a laugh and joke for a couple of hundred baht. The fact that I spoke passable Thai helped I'm sure.

Hang on! Let me get this right. You said on one occasion they grabbed you for no reason. And you still paid them? I may be wrong but the guys doing this are government workers and not the police hence they have no powers of arrest. And you still paid them? :huh:

No wonder some Thais think westerners are an easy mark.

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This is a well known place to get searched by the police. They're looking for things like Viagra or other controlled drugs without a valid prescription.

If you had any of these in your luggage they would have demanded money from you. This has been going on for years.

Then all they have to do is walk down Sukhumvit a bit and they'll find more than they can shake a big stick at on the street stalls lining the road.

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This is a well known place to get searched by the police. They're looking for things like Viagra or other controlled drugs without a valid prescription.

If you had any of these in your luggage they would have demanded money from you. This has been going on for years.

+1

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This is a well known place to get searched by the police. They're looking for things like Viagra or other controlled drugs without a valid prescription.

If you had any of these in your luggage they would have demanded money from you. This has been going on for years.

Then all they have to do is walk down Sukhumvit a bit and they'll find more than they can shake a big stick at on the street stalls lining the road.

They know the stalls are selling fakes thats why they're not interested,

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I have a very simple solution to ensure you will never be scammed or extorted by the BiB at any bus station in Thailand, as told to me by a very very senior police official....and comes with a money back guarantee.......

Stop taking the bus.....buy a car....:lol:

or fly

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This is a well known place to get searched by the police. They're looking for things like Viagra

CORNY JOKE ALERT

I guess there's a " stiff " penalty involved.

Hard to believe the OP is up for it.

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Ever since a mate warned me about shakedowns at Ekkamai bus station in 1993, I have been dying for it to happen to me. Alas I must just look to clever for the coppers

Lucky the grammar police weren't there they wouldn't think you to be "too clever".

But from now on if I've any money in my pockets it'll be time to get off at On Nut!

If there were <deleted> police on this site, then i suggest you would have been locked up long ago

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Ever since a mate warned me about shakedowns at Ekkamai bus station in 1993, I have been dying for it to happen to me. Alas I must just look to clever for the coppers

Apparently your bum disguise is working fine. :D

Cheeky

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