Members of the Metropolitan Police Bureau’s (MPB) online patrol unit have detained a man on suspicion of running a fraudulent modeling agency that caused losses of about 10 million Thai Baht.
Jarungsak, 51, was the only name given to the suspect by Metropolitan Police Bureau 1 Investigation Division Superintendent Pol Col Wichit Thirakhajornwong. On October 1, he was detained at a residence in the Bang Phli neighborhood of Samut Prakan.
Jarungsak is charged with conspiring to commit fraud and entering fraudulent data into a computer system.
Mr. Jarungsak, also known as “Ajarn [Teacher] Toey,” was a former talent scout who rose to prominence in 2019, according to the police. He managed the Facebook page “Top Model 2022,” which promised to support young people who wanted to become models, according to the authorities.
At department stores in the Rama IX and RCA neighborhoods, the suspect allegedly talked to parents and demanded a 1,000 baht tuition fee for a modeling lesson.
He would later beg parents for extra money so that he could send their kids to modeling competitions in Pattaya, Hong Kong, and Singapore. For entry, they had to pay 5,000 Baht, and for other expenses, they had to pay anywhere from 40,000 to 50,000 Baht.
The parent’s were allegedly promised a commission after each event by the suspect. He would take the cash from the parents, but then vanish.
He refuted the charge, claiming that although he had a modeling agency, it had to close last year as a result of financial difficulties brought on by the Covid-19 outbreak. According to Pol Col Wichit, a number of parents had complained about Mr. Jarungsak, and the total damage was believed to be close to 10 million baht.