Obscene behavior at beaches

Once again, I am astounded by the nudity and obscene behavior at Laem Singh and Patong beaches. I’ve seen men masturbating in the water while children swim nearby – and I’ve confronted these individuals. I’ve seen women walk around naked, yet again while children are around. Correct me if I’m wrong, but surely this is illegal in Thailand. Maybe these tourists should go back to where they came from. I am truly disgusted.

Steve Stander, South Africa.

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If what you are saying is true, then those people are all breaking the law. If you make a complaint with the police, they can all be arrested. If Tourist Police officers pass by, you can complain to them. They do not have the power to make an arrest but they can issue warnings or request officers at the local police station to arrest the offenders, take them to the police station and fine them. As for the details you give, if they are wearing absolutely nothing, then they are also offending Thai traditions. The penalty is a small fine. Call 191 (the police hot line), 1155 or 076-254693 (Tourist Police). You can also stop patrol police if you see them driving by and ask them to make the arrest.

Pol Lt Col Panudej Sookwong, Superintendent, Phuket Tourist Police.

Answered on February 20, 2004.
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Section 388 of the Penal Code of Thailand states (in the official translation): “Whoever does any shameful act in public by indecently exposing his or her person, or by committing an other indecent act, shall be punished with fine not exceeding five hundred baht.”

Phuket Gazette

Answered on February 20, 2004.
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