NAKHON RATCHASIMA — Police on Monday said they would seek a warrant to arrest copyright agents who allegedly attempted to extort a 15-year-old girl of 50,000 baht for copyright infringement.
Korat provincial police chief Maj. Gen. Sujin Nitpanit said the investigation was almost complete and court warrants would be issued for copyright agents, whose names have been withheld by police, by the end of this week.
“We are waiting for documents from relevant copyright holders,” Sujin said. “We have also established a committee to inquire police officers accused of involving with the sting operation.”
About 50 vendors in Korat yesterday were also preparing to file criminal complaints against the same copyright agents who ordered krathongs decorated with cartoon characters from a teenage girl and then threatened her to pay fines or face criminal charges last week.
One of the vendors said that her daughter is the victim of a similar sting operation, and they paid 30,000 baht to avoid criminal charges after her daughter made Rilakkuma bear krathongs. Vendors claim a total collective loss of around one million baht. Police said they would take the 50 vendors’ complaints into question.
Korat City police chief Col. Kachen Setaputta had been moved from his post Friday due to allegations that police officers under his command were colluding with copyright agents.
More victims in other provinces have also came out to claim they had been similarly extorted after making customized products adorned with cartoon characters.
Kamphaeng Phet vendor Kadnang Ketwong, 35, said on Sunday that a man ordered her in June to make plastic wicker water bottle pouches printed with Doraemon, a robot cat from a Japanese cartoon. Once she brought the order to the customer, the man claimed to be a copyright agent and demanded 50,000 baht from her.
She asked the provincial justice office to provide her legal assistance and was preparing to file criminal following the girl’s case which broke the headlines last week.
Meanwhile, the girl in Korat earned over 16,000 baht on Loy Krathong day Monday as people queued up to buy her krathongs made of ice cream cones at a stall in front of Central Plaza Nakhon Ratchasima.
She said her floats sold out in about an hour and she would use half for tuition fees, and give her parents the other half.