After two months barricaded in a Phuket Town condo amid an extended dispute with the landlord, Australian-born British national David Maclean, 50, from Brisbane, remains locked in the apartment despite police previously assuring that action would be taken when his immigration permit to stay in the country expired on Feb 21.
Mr Maclean has not left the condo, located at the “Supalai Park at Phuket City” complex on Nakorn Rd, since Jan 14 amid a dispute with the landlady over paying the rent. Repeated attempts by police and representatives from the British embassy to convince Mr Maclean to at least open the door have failed.
The situation escalated on Feb 2 when police became concerned that Mr Maclean might jump from the balcony of the ninth-floor condo, prompting Phuket Governor Phakaphong Tavipatana to arrive at the scene along with high-ranking Phuket City Police officers to assess the situation.
At a meeting of the officials involved at the condo tower it was later agreed to wait for Mr Maclean’s permit to stay to expire on Feb 21, after which officers will the legal authority to enter the condo by force. (See story here.)
Capt Ekkachai Siri of the Phuket Tourist Police confirmed to The Phuket News yesterday (Mar 14) that Mr Maclean remains in the condo, and that his permit to stay has expired.
However, Capt Ekkachai also said yesterday that officers still had yet to come up with a plan to have Mr Maclean vacate the property as police have decided to not enter the property by force.
“We are concerned about him. We have tried many ways before, but without success. I have no plan yet because I am afraid that he might hurt himself or jump,” Capt Ekkachai said.
“We need to get him out soon, but I have to talk with other police about it,” he added..
Meanwhile, Phuket Immigration Chief Col Kathathorn Kumthieng yesterday confirmed that his office was ready to take action.
“This case now involves a foreigner staying in the Kingdom of Thailand whose permit to stay has expired.
“It is a criminal offense, which every police officer must enforce by arresting the suspect. They can perform any such arrests as soon as they learn of the where the suspect is staying.”
The Phuket News
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