Fake tourist police trying to lure you into buying worthless diamonds

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    Michael Taylor

    As an expat in Thailand, I thought I knew every possible scam in the streets of Bangkok, but the scammers are becoming more sophisticated and they still were able to rip me off.
    On one of my days off, I decided to do some sightseeing. At one of the temples, a tourist police officer came to me and warned me that if I wanted to buy jewelry, as a tourist had to be careful of fraud. When I told him I was not interested in buying jewelry, he looked very surprised. He informed me that this week there was a special exhibition where everybody can buy at wholesale prices and tourists can buy tax-free.
    As he looked like an official government employee, I was not even suspicious of the fact that I hadn’t heard of this before. It also sounded like a good deal, so I thought it might be nice to send something back to my girl in the US. He wrote the name of a store on a piece of paper, which I could give to a taxi driver (he said tuk-tuk driver, but I had already learned not to trust those).
    Later that day I decided to check it out, and ended up buying a nice diamond and gold bracelet and matching necklace. I shipped them to my girl, but she told me she didn’t like them as much the ones I gave her before. Thinking I had made a great deal on them and hoping for a bit of profit when reselling them, I told her to get them appraised.
    I felt like a total idiot when she called me back that the Arizona diamond center had informed her they were virtually worthless as the quality was so bad.
    Even when I thought I knew every trick and trusted nobody but the police, they played me hard. I searched online for a bit and discovered I was not the only one to wrongly trust someone looking like an official tourist police officer.
    When I received the fake jewelry back, I took them together with the appraisal report from the US to the real tourist police and told them what had happened. They didn’t even look surprised! They called the shop where I had bought them, and within a few minutes they told me I could go back to the store and return the products for a full refund. That’s all they could do for me, and it was clear they had no intention to investigate into the matter. In fact, the way he talked to the shop manager, I can’t help thinking they’re actually in on the whole scam as well.

  • #732 Reply

    Tourist-Scams
    Keymaster

    Hello Michael,

    great story, and good to hear you got your money back!
    You’ve been played by two different scams combined: the Bangkok fake diamonds fraud and the Bangkok fake Tourist Police scam

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