Thai Shop Owner Curses Scammers With Chillies

A Thai shop owner in Buriram province was scammed out of all her savings. A year’s worth of frustration and dead ends has led to her cursing her scammers by burning salt and chillies. 

Here’s how she got scammed and why she chose this method to curse her scammers.

Call centre scammers tricked woman into downloading tax payment app

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It’s no secret that everyone dreads tax season. It’s not just paying taxes, but sometimes just the sheer paperwork makes taxes a nightmare. 

That’s why the temptation of one simple app that’ll calculate and pay your taxes for you with a simple touch of a button is so enticing. This is what was promised to one Thai shop owner in Buriram. In 2022, she downloaded an app that she thought would help her pay her taxes. But as a result, she lost all of her savings – almost ฿80,000 in total.

A year of frustration

Image credit: Andre Taissin via Unsplash

She went to the police, but little could be done to help her. The money she had saved up from her small business, a measly ฿10-20 per day, vanished into thin air with no means of being saved. 

She contemplated suicide, but held on for the sake of her children and family.

Burning salt and chillies to curse her scammers

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As a final desperate attempt at any semblance of retribution, the Thai shop owner turned to curses. She set out a simple stove and wok to burn some salt and chillies to curse her scammers. 

This is an old Thai superstition that, according to Museum Siam, is based on ancient Hindu texts that made its way to Siam. Historically, you would pour salt into a flame after yelling curses at your enemies, so that your enemies will explode like the salt you just threw into the fire. The curse transformed after entering Siam when people added chillies for extra heat and firepower.

Be wary of scammers for your family during the holiday (and tax) season

We’re getting close to the end of the year. While it’s a time to be festive and celebrate, it’s important to be vigilant as it is also a time where people take advantage of others feeling generous with their wealth. 

Stay near family and friends, and help them be wary of people who are looking to take advantage of their goodwill during the holiday season. 

If you’re looking for gift ideas this Christmas, try guide to last-minute gifts. Alternatively, for a festive feast, check out these lavish Christmas events and dinners in Bangkok.

Cover image adapted from: and Andre Taissin via Unsplash

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