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Hunted seastead couple ‘traced to Tarutao’

PHUKET: The US-Thai couple who built and anchored a seastead floating home off Phuket were last traced to Tarutao island, and the full weight of the law awaits them, authorities said on Tuesday (Apr 23).

By Bangkok Post

Tuesday 23 April 2019, 06:11PM

Officials inspect the detached floating seastead cabin at Phuket Deep Sea Port in Phuket province on Tuesday. Photo: Achadtaya Chuenniran / Bangkok Post

Officials inspect the detached floating seastead cabin at Phuket Deep Sea Port in Phuket province on Tuesday. Photo: Achadtaya Chuenniran / Bangkok Post

Phuket Provincial Police Chief Maj Gen Wisarn Phanmanee said that American Chad Elwartowski, 46, and Supranee Thepdet’s last known location was the southern border island of Tarutao. They were believed to be still within Thai territory, although they had shut down their mobile phones.

Police were preparing charges against them and had already questioned people involved in building and positioning their floating, octagonal six-metre-wide cabin in the sea southeast of Phuket.

Authorities announced earlier they were preparing applications for arrest warrants for the couple. Mr Elwartoski’s visa has been cancelled.

“Police have contacted all relevant agencies to determine what further possible legal action can be taken against them, in addition to charges under Section 119... All laws relating to this matter will be enforced,” Maj Gen Wisarn said.

Section 119 of the Criminal Code relates to national sovereignty.

V/Adm Sitthiporn Matkasem, Commander of the Third Naval Area, said the couple’s action had affected national sovereignty. They had put a floating house in place and invited others to join them at their location, which they claimed to be autonomous.

Laguna Golf Phuket

“It affects security and challenges the state power of Thailand and it is intolerable,” he said.

The navy dismantled the floating structure on Monday and its components were taken to Phuket Deep Sea Port, arriving late that night, V/Adm Sitthiporn said.

Phuket Governor Phakaphong Thavipatana said he suspended the business licence of the builder of the floating house, who was also fined, and the legality of the business was being thoroughly examined. The dockyard was in Moo 7 Mai Khao in Thalang, he said. (See previous story here.)

“It is on rented land… Officials will check if any nominee runs it. Any government officials who were involved will be decisively disciplined,” the Governor said.


Read original story here.



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Kurt | 24 April 2019 - 21:04:45

Fake news by thai authorities.
The US-Thai couple didn't build, tugged, and anchored the floating seastead of Phuket island. That was all 
 done by thai companies. The US-Thai couple were just trying to see how was living on it, and wanted promoting it. And what has rented land of a long time legal ship yard to with the whole seastead affair? They completely getting 'wild'.

Kurt | 23 April 2019 - 23:49:14

If all the thai constructors/builders, and Officials did not acted so heavenly against any thai law than Thailand would not have been in such great danger and effected in national security. Hehehe.  Why the full load on this couple who just stayed on the Seastead and had great plans to make this together with thai government a real Smart 4.0 project?

BenPendejo | 23 April 2019 - 23:27:37

Pulling out the big guns over what appears to be the "Mother of all Misunderstandings". Granted, this was a pretty flaky venture, but hardly a threat national sovereignty. This guy and his GF basically had a big fancy buoy they thought they would call home some day. Biggest threat was the poo and pee that would be discharged, but we all know that officials don't care about sewage flo...

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