Thailand arrests tourist for one-star restaurant reviews

By Hoang Vu   May 13, 2024 | 11:05 pm PT
Thailand arrests tourist for one-star restaurant reviews
People enjoy a drink at a bar along the popular tourist and nightlife strip Khao San Road in Bangkok on Dec 10, 2021. Photo by AFP
Police in Thailand have detained a British tourist for allegedly defaming an Italian restaurant in Phuket with negative reviews on Google due to a personal conflict.

He was charged for "importing false information online in a way that is likely to cause damage" that could face imprisonment of up to five years and a fine of up to 100,000 baht (US$2,700) under Thai law, Thaiger reported.

The restaurant owner had filed a complaint with police after discovering a sudden drop in their Google Maps rating from 4.9 stars to 3.1 stars.

Several new one-star reviews containing negative comments were found and one of the comments came from the 21-year-old tourist.

According to the police, his motive began from a conflict with the restaurant owner, Mirror reported.

He had wanted to use the restaurant as a convenient gateway to his condominium in Phuket but the owner did not agree.

To take revenge on the restaurant owner, he was accused of enlisting his friends to flood the restaurant with one-star reviews, causing its rating to plunge.

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