By Khanathit Srihirundaj
Police filed seven charges against producer assistant and graphic designer Kamonsak Chanthasing, who worked at a popular television station. Computer equipment and a large number of incriminating video clips were seized from his condominium in Bangkok’s Thon Buri district on June 5. Of his victims, at least two were aged under 18.
He is being charged with alleged illegal possession of child pornography; trading/distribution of child pornographic materials; compelling others to perform acts by instilling in them fear of damage to their reputation; uploading pornographic materials on computer systems accessible to the public and passing on or publishing content violating the law; violating the Child Protection Act (by compelling, threatening, inducing a child to conduct inappropriate behaviour or to encourage behaviour that is at risk of wrongdoing); as well as two violations to the Human Trafficking Act – illegally publishing or distributing pornographic materials for personal gains, and reaping benefits from the production of pornographic materials made with persons under 18.
The case follows complaints filed with specialist officers at the Royal Thai Police’s TICAC (Thailand’s Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce) and TACTICS (Thailand’s Action Taskforce for Information Technology Crime Suppression) that Kamonsak faked his identity as modelling agent by creating a Facebook page with the image of a beautiful Thai woman. He used this pretence to befriend the victims who worked as or wished to work as product presenters, commonly known as “pretties”. He then convinced them to take and submit “sample” nude video clips for “casting for jobs in the Thai TV and film entertainment industry” and he promised to pay them thousands or tens of thousands of baht for such photos and clips. Once he got the materials, he blocked the victims’ access to his Facebook page and allegedly sold the material on the Dark Web.
Some victims were also blackmailed into submitting more obscene video clips, as he threatened to release the previously submitted clips on the Internet, police said. As he had a large stock of such materials and large sums of money were deposited and taken out of his bank accounts, police suspected that he had been doing this for years. Investigations are ongoing to arrest his accomplices.