THAI police arrested one of six foreigners wanted in the extortion of cryptocurrencies worth US$50,000 (approximately 1.878 million baht) from a Russian couple at a coffee shop on Koh Samui earlier this month, Naewna newspaper said this evening (Sept. 28).
Pol. Lt. Gen. Amphol Buarabporn, commander of Provincial Police Region 8, had ordered quick tracking down of the six foreign suspects in this case with Koh Samui provincial court having issued warrants for their arrest.
Wanted are Mr. Salman Almaty, 56, a Kazakh, who fled the country on Sept. 17; Mr. Tschingis Akhmadov, 39, a German, who escaped on Sept. 20; Mr. Andrey Nizhegorodtsev, 37, a Kazakh arrested in Chonburi today; Mr. Vladimir Orekhov, 42, a Russian; as well as two others whose name and nationality are not yet known but this is being investigated.
This followed the filing of a complaint by Mr. Evgenll Abdullin, 31, and his wife, Mrs. Ekaterna Abdullin, on Sunday Sept. 25 that on Sept. 15 the six foreign men surrounded them as they were drinking coffee and upon being threatened they transferred US$50,000 in digital currencies to them. They identified one of them as Salman Almaty.
Chonburi police succeeded in arresting Nizhegorodtsev at a house in this province and seized the black van used in the extortion from him. He was quickly flown to Koh Samui for questioning.
Also apprehended from a villa at Bo Phut sub-district of Koh Samui was Mr. Oleh Yeroshenko, 35, a Ukrainian national, with a seven-seat multi-purpose vehicle and a motorcycle seized from him.
He too was taken to Koh Samui police station for questioning but police said he did not participate in the extortion but helped make reservations for the gang.
It was reported that the Russian couple who suffered the shakedown have been living in Koh Samui for five years and were doing real estate business. They had travelled in and out of Thailand many times with the last time being early this year.
A pixelated image of the Kazakh man after he was arrested in Chonburi. The Thai headline says, “Foreign gang arrested. Robbed cryptocurrencies worth almost 2 million baht from Russians in the middle of Koh Samui.” Photo: Naewna