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Tourist operators in gang rape village wonder where all the visitors have gone

Sanook reported that tourism has dried up in a small southern village where there is an ongoing case of a 14 year old who claims to have been gang raped by 40 men.

Boat operators in the picturesque rural area of Koh Raet at the village of Takuatung in Pangnga complained that no one is visitng any more causing them hardship.

The operators and the Phu Yai Ban want to assure tourists that it is safe and they can have confidence about the area.

The victim was raped repeatedly while her parents were out working in a case that seems to be mired in influential figures.

But now the people who rely on tourism have been moaning to Sanook reporters who visited yesterday.

The reporters found no tourists at all.

Boatman Chaliaw Romin said that before the story broke there was usually three busloads of tourists visiting the scenic area every day. This gave him 500-600 baht. Now he has nothing.

“It is still safe here,” he said. “You can be sure of that”.

Takuatung Phu Yai Ban Saman Chonkhaet said forty families and a total of 180 people lived there. He talked about the beautiful area and echoed that it is still safe for visitors.

But tourists have voted with their feet – hardly surprising given that it is an area with a small number of people and 40 men could be charged with rape of a minor.

The investigation continues.

Sanook

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