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Thanapon Luetan, now headed to a telephone-free zone

Phuket Phone Pirate Priced Out of Business

Sunday, January 16, 2011
THE NUMBER is up for a man selling low-price copies of iPhones, Blackberries and Nokias on Phuket. The only question is, which number? Some of the models he was selling were adapted to contain two or even three SIM cards.

And they were darn good value, too in some cases a fifth or even one tenth of the real mobile models.

Low prices proved to be the downfall of Thanapon Luetan, 31, who was arrested when police raided his Orgus Phone shop in front of Villa 3 on Chao Fa Road East, in Vichit, south of Phuket City, at 8.30am today.

Someone at a genuine store selling genuine telephones called Nokia and asked about the pamphlets that Khun Thanapon had been distributing, promoting his extraordinary low prices.

He had been selling ''for quite some time,'' police said today when Khun Thanapon was presented to the media at Phuket City police station.

Care for an iPhone? Khun Thanapon's version came for 2300 baht compared to 23,000 baht, and with a one-year warranty.

In many cases, the mobiles had been adapted to do more tricks - to show tv and to generally appeal more to some Thai buyers.

Legitimate stores always declined to repair the fakes, police said, so Khun Thanapon's store was the only place to go. Police also confiscated a list of customers. It is not known where earlier buyers will go now.

Khun Thanapon, originally from Ranong, said that the bodies of the models were high-quality, but the batteries were not as good.

How did he buy the fake phones? Legitimately, from China, over the Internet. He will be held pending a court appearance.


Comments have been disabled for this article.


Hello, Hello, is this thing working ?

" How did he buy the fake phones? Legitimately, from China,"

Sorry I didn't realise buying fake goods for resale was a legitimate occupation.

"Damm another Chinese batt flattery.

Posted by alexander grahame bell on January 16, 2011 22:28


Was he actually doing something wrong selling the phones?

I've seen the knock offs in several shops and on the internet, they seem like a good value for the price.

can use any sim card, and comes with spare batteries. ( iPhone battery is built in and expensive to replace)

maybe his ads were misleading, but my guess is the other shops want him out of business

Posted by MIKEY on January 17, 2011 01:10


So are these fakes different to all the other fakes you can buy in Phuket Town and Big C, just to name a couple?

People know they are fakes from the price - it's obvious.

Posted by Tbs on January 17, 2011 04:00


Conversely, I have been warned that the fakes are being sold as authentic, including the high price, at some phone shops in Patong.

Posted by Treelover on January 17, 2011 08:41


I think the other stores did not like him doing good business, hey? How many other folks sell copy phones in Thailand and Phuket? Millions of copy phones are on sale. Just check, Central, Big C, T Lotus, Jungceylon and the street vendors everywhere. Poor chap, I hope he is back in business soon.

Posted by GrahamM on January 17, 2011 08:43


@ GrahamM

Not to worry folks, just read in another Phuket publication Thanapon Luetan, though the surname is spelt differently, posted bail and out walking free and is possibly ready to resume business.

I just got a long distance call from my executor about this matter.

You must remember this felon has not paid one satang to my estate in royalties nor to the phone manufacturers and I'm a little pi55ed of with the Thai authorities handling of the matter, especially as now, Quote " After confessing to several charges of knowingly breaking copyright law, he posted bail and was released. "

I guess they feel that if I hadn't invented the thing in the fist place, none of this would've happened. Just like a falang involved in a traffic incident.

Posted by alexander grahame bell on January 17, 2011 19:01


Hey, alexander grahame bell, lets not forget you are a sept of the MacMillan clan OK. You must remember that MacMillans are the biggest clan worldwide. Bells should ring true.
Leave the man be. Slainte.

Posted by GrahamM on January 17, 2011 20:51

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