While Dutch national Wesley Halbach sits in Thai jail for charges related to the dodgy money-making app SPM Shopping Mall said to have scammed thousands, a GoFundMe page has been set up, asking for donations to help pay bail, hire a lawyer and reunite Wesley with his family overseas. The page claims that the 37 year old father is a “victim of a big set up.”
In previous reports, police said they suspect Wesley was an administrator for the scheme’s Line messaging chats and that there are around 40 other suspected “Line Admin.” A recent Facebook post, with a link to the GoFundMe, claims Wesley is “not the ringleader” of the operation, adding that “naivety is at play” and he is not guilty.
Wesley was arrested last month at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport. Police say Wesley along with his wife and child were about to flee to the Netherlands. Police allege that around 100 million baht had already been transferred to banks in a neighbouring country.
Police suspect 10,000 people fell victim to the SPM Shopping Mall scam. People were paid to “click” on products, giving it a positive rating to boost the SEO rankings. The more money invested, the more they could “click” and potentially more money back.
Wesley is accused of monitoring the SPM Shopping Mall website and Line app as well as inviting people to join the scheme. Several Phuket residents filed complaints with police, accusing Wesley of tricking them into making an investment. He was arrested on charges of defrauding others and conducting an online scam.
The GoFundMe, set up by the mother of Wesley’s 2 year old daughter, says they’ve used all their savings to help “fight for his justice.” So far, more than 900 euros have been raised to help Wesley pay for lawyer costs and bail.
Wesley is at the moment stuck in Thailand and waiting for his court.
He is accused in court of acts which he has not done. He is a victim of a big set up.
He was very naive to trust wrong people and now we are living a nightmare.
If you have ever spent any time inside a Thai prison, you will know how difficult life can be on the inside. There is constant overcrowding, disease, lack of clean food and water, immense heat, lack of access to people outside the prison, occasional violence and death, and other challenges.
Click HERE for the GoFundMe page if you feel inclined to support this Dutch citizen.
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