''Last Friday I sent a list of 269 companies to the Business Development Office on Phuket for checking because these companies have land and have foreign involvement,'' he said.
''But the law still says that foreigners cannot own land, except for condominiums.''
The fuss about who owns Phuket's coastal land is a replay of precisely the same suggestion in September 2009, when it was proved to be untrue.
There is no reason why the situation has changed in the past two years, when property purchases on Phuket by foreigners have been lower than they were before 2009.
Khun Paitoon said he suspected the article was the Phuket equivalent of what's known in the west as a ''tabloid beat-up''.
Here's what Phuketwan published back in 2009 to disprove the same claim. There is no evidence that much has changed since then:
WHO owns Phuket's beachfront? That's a topic to capture the imagination as questions are raised about ''control'' of the island's prime holiday seafront.
Phuketwan asked Patong local tessaban council that question and we were provided with this list of resorts and owners along the island's prime holiday strip.
Ownership and so-called ''control'' vary at other popular beaches but in most cases, although Western brands and managers are often involved, the land remains firmly in Thai hands through families, or public companies.
Here are the 29 beachfront (or very close) resorts and their owners as listed by the tessaban, plus the number of rooms.
1. Sea View Patong (Thai owner) 141;
2. Anatika Boutique Hotel (Amarit Committee) 32;
3. Baan Boa Resort (Kerakai Suthsmmetha) 46;
4. QVC Patong Beach (QVC Company) 18;
5. New Swiss Hotel (New Swiss, Thai owner) 44;
6. The Bliss (Phuket Seagull Grand Company) 36;
7. Seagull Home (Seagull Home Company) 32;
8. Sea Pearl Beach (Sea Pearl Condotel) 55;
9. Merlin Hotel (Patong Merlin Company) 385;
10. Holiday Inn (LC Thailand Company) 412;
11. Horizon Beach Resort (Patong Pinongsub) 96;
12. Royal Palm Resort (NS Trading) 66;
13. Baan Laimai Beach Resort (Patong Shopping Company and Phuket Kebsub Business) 76;
14. Banthai Beach Resort (Banthai Hotel and Resort Company) 217;
15. Patong Beach Hotel (Patong Beach Company) 245;
16. Patong Inn (Supachok Lakapan) 38;
17. Tropicana Hotel (The New Paradise Tropicana, foreign rent) 79;
18. Safari Hotel (STP Group) 35;
19. Patong Bay Garden (Pisona Company) 71;
20. La Flora (STP Group) 37;
21. Cabana Resort (Hardsaineng Company) 76;
22. Thara Patong Beach Resort (Thara Patong Company) 196;
23. Phuket Graceland Resort ( Phunamkert Company) 460;
24. B-Lay Tong (soon to open);
25. Patong Paragon (local owner, foreign rent) xx;
26. Novotel Resort (Yee Teng Company) 215;
27. Diamond Cliff Resort (Eakwanit family) 333;
28. Patong Lodge (Surapong Pongnisorn) 144;
29. Blue Marine (Tan Lam Tong Company) xx;
30. Kalim Sunset (Hang Tong Prayoon) xx.
This version of ownership in 2009 was unchalleged then and is likely to remain unchallenged in 2011.