Thai ‘run­away bride’ de­nies rob­bing men

Sunday News - - WORLD -

BANGKOK Over the course of about two years, a Thai woman con­vinced at least 11 dif­fer­ent men to marry her, po­lice say.

Fol­low­ing Thai tra­di­tion, each man gave her a gen­er­ous dowry, at which point she dis­ap­peared, the men have told po­lice.

From each hus­band, she col­lected be­tween US$6000 and US$30,000 (NZ$8200 to NZ$41,000) be­fore van­ish­ing, us­ing var­i­ous ex­cuses, such as she had to re­turn to her fam­ily’s home to deal with their fruit busi­ness, or her horo­scope had ad­vised her that it wasn’t a good time to be mar­ried.

So pro­lific and con­vinc­ing was the woman that she mar­ried four times dur­ing Au­gust alone, po­lice told Thai me­dia.

Not un­til a warn­ing about her was posted on Face­book did any of the men go to the au­thor­i­ties.

English-lan­guage news­pa­per The Na­tion, quot­ing a lawyer for the men, re­ported that the method was pretty much the same in each case. The woman would friend the man on Face­book, meet him, have sex with him, marry him, and then take the money and run.

Pi­rat Pueng­suk, 28, claims to have lost a US$30,000 dowry plus a Toy­ota util­ity. He told po­lice he quit his job as a trans­port driver and mar­ried the woman after a two-month whirl­wind Face­book courtship, think­ing he would join her and her par­ents in the fruit busi­ness. She then van­ished in his truck.

As it turned out, a war­rant for fraud was al­ready out on the woman, stem­ming from an ap­par­ently un­re­lated in­ci­dent. Po­lice caught up with her on Fri­day in Nakhon Pathom Prov­ince, known for its fruit or­chards. They ar­rested Jariya­porn Buayai, 32, and a man po­lice de­scribed as her real hus­band.

The woman, ac­cord­ing to The Bangkok Post, said she did not in­tend to cheat the men, of whom she claimed there were only seven. She re­port­edly said they had vol­un­tar­ily in­vested money in the fam­ily’s fruit busi­ness.

Po­lice want to in­ter­ro­gate her par­ents, to de­ter­mine whether they might have had a role in the scams, based on the fact that they showed up for each wed­ding. Po­lice said the par­ents were in hid­ing. Wash­ing­ton Post

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