The owner of a popular Japanese buffet restaurant, Daruma Sushi, made a slippery getaway from Thailand last week, leaving behind a trail of chaos and complaints from more than 500 people. A number of these people had filed fraudulent complaints against the owner with the police and the consumer protection agency.
The owner disappeared a day before closing the 27 Daruma Sushi establishments. Immigration records reveal that the owner, whose identity has not been released, left Thailand alone for Dubai at 11 p.m. last Thursday.
The commotion began shortly after the owner announced that electronic vouchers for a salmon buffet were available for just 199 baht. Salmon fanatics jumped at the chance, with some buying over 2,000 e-vouchers and reselling them for a profit.
Hundreds of people who shelled out money for the offering suffered financial losses estimated at 100 million baht.
The Office of the Consumer Protection Board has received a considerable number of complaints from victims claiming that they were fraudulently sold the vouchers. The sale seemed strange, according to the general secretary of the council, Prateep Charoengulpa.
“Offering a promotion with a discount from 499 baht to 199 baht to boost sales of the e-voucher, which is normally sold 5-10 per order, is very suspicious from the start. It looks like a scam from the start.
Electronic vouchers used in place of paper vouchers facilitate the destruction of any fraudulent evidence that could be used against the owner.
Last month, the owner of Daruma Sushi told his franchisees in a LINE group chat that he was struggling to secure salmon supplies, then lost communication with everyone in the group.
THE SOURCE: Bangkok Post