Daily Archives: August 29, 2009

Highway Robbery in Thailand

Today I received an email forward that is doing the rounds in Thailand at the moment. It shows some “highway robbers” in action in Thailand. The lady who took these pictures was annoyed with being pulled over and decided to document her experience. Don’t ask me how she got away with taking these pictures. Maybe because so many people were being pulled over.

This actually happened to me a few years back when I was going down the highway in the middle of no-where. They were literally pulling everyone over for speeding though they had no speed camera to back up their claim. They apparently tried the same trick with this woman saying that she was driving too fast. She told them that it was impossible as her twenty year old car wasn’t capable of going faster than 80 km/ph.

The policeman than walked around the car looking for some other reason to fine her. He then spotted that her rear license plate was missing. She explained to him that it had fallen off recently and hadn’t put it back on yet. She showed him the plate in the back of the car. But, he told her it would be a 200 baht fine that she could pay immediately.

When she was lining up with other people who were also waiting to pay fines, she noticed that there were two kinds of tickets being issued. The above book shows a home-made version made with a stamp. You can see one of these home-made tickets at the bottom of the third picture. There is a drivers license on top of it. She said that the fines were ranging from 200 to 1,000 baht depending on how much you argued and how you behaved.

This final picture that she took shows that there was also a real ticket book which they would sometimes use. Maybe this one was for people who argued too much and had to pay the full price. As you can see, these photographs are dated November 2008. Of course, not all policemen are corrupt. I am not sure what the statistics are, but I have been stopped four times by Thai policemen and only one of them didn’t ask for a bribe first.