This is the chilling moment fugitive Russian mafia suspects are finally caught and paraded to the public – wearing black sunglasses and SURGICAL MASKS.
The group – sitting together like a scene from Reservoir Dogs – were arrested along with nine other underworld figures as police step up their crackdown on notorious Pattaya, Thailand.
Crime-kingpin Aleksandr Danilov, 43, is said to be the most sinister – wanted in native Russia and accused in Thailand of running strip clubs while allegedly trafficking Eastern European women and drugs into the country.
Danilov and thirteen others said to part of crime syndicates were arrested and driven to immigration officers in Bangkok where four of them were paraded for the cameras and pinned down for visa offences on Monday.
Col. Raleuk Intawatsami said the arrests had sparked ‘’chaos’’ – the latest victims of a crackdown which has so far targeted bars, strip clubs and prostitutes in the sleazy city.
He said: ”Pattaya is in chaos because of Danilov’s arrest. He had been staying here illegally since May 2012.
‘’We will get them, and every other criminal. We’re taking this seriously and we won’t stop until this is a safe place.”
Pol Lt Gen Nathathorn Prousoonthorn said the men were mafia member suspects and wanted under warrants issued by their governments or Interpol.
They included HIV positive playboy and alleged drug trafficker Sergei Mareev, whom police said had bedded hundreds of local women while smuggling heroin into the country.
The Russian gang also included Mikhail Kriventstov and Anton Filippov and two other Russian, plus associates from Ukraine, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Morroco and Iran.
Col. Raleuk said they were ‘’all Facebook friends’’ who were connected to criminal enterprises.
The 14 men were charged with staying illegally in Thailand or working illegally and are set to be deported to forces in their native countries.
Col. Raleuk admitted that Russian mafia gangs have a strong presence in the sea-side resort while Chinese triads, Japanese Yakuza and Filipino gangs have also set up operations.
And earlier this year British ‘’Wolf of Wall Street’’ boiler room gangster Tony Kenyway who moved from was executed as he stepped into his top-of-the range Porsche after a morning work out. Criminal attorney Los Angeles has considerable experience of dealing with such cases.
The cases show how cops have struggled to contain crime in the former fishing village – which emerged in the 1960s as a sleazy retreat for American GIs to get some ‘R and R’ away from the horrors of Vietnam.
But tourism chiefs are desperate to clean up the city’s image, with separate groups targeted so far including bars, strip clubs, shisha bars, transsexuals, Burmese migrants and African sex workers.
The crackdown has stepped up in recent weeks after the resort was dubbed the ‘’sex capital of the world’’ with government chiefs now pushing to attract wealthier Chinese tourists and families.
Pongphanu Sewatrun, from the Ministry for Tourism and Sports, said: ”Pattaya has had some problems but it is a great place and a very important place for the tourism industry. We want it to continue to develop into the future.
”There is nothing to worry about. Pattaya is a quality place that is of a world standard.”
Pol Col Apichai Krobpetch said ‘’there is no such thing as prostitution in Pattaya.’’
“We are working very hard to keep these issues under control. We patrol every night to make sure that there are no sex workers on the streets,’’ he told the Bangkok Post.