An American tourist has avoided jail time and legal action after being arrest for writing a bad hotel review in Thailand, BBC report.
Wesley Barnes, a teacher, posted several reviews allegedly accusing the Sea View Koh Chang resort of "modern day slavery". Reports say he had a disagreement with a restaurant manager over a 500 baht ($22) corkage fee for a bottle of gin he brought to dinner, which resulted in the negative reviews of the property.
He was later detained and charged due to Thailand's strict anti-defamation laws.
Local police explained Sea View Koh Chang had filed a complaint in August after Mr Barnes posted what the hotel described as "false and defamatory reviews", while the resort said Mr Barnes "left multiple fabricated and slanderous" reviews, including one accusing management of treating staff like "slaves".
Following his arrest, the tourist and holiday resort reached an agreement without taking legal action. The settlement included Wesley making an apology to the hotel and to Thailand's tourism authority, as well as letters to all publications who had previously reported on the arrest.
Under Thailand's criminal defamation and computer crimes acts, he could have been fined up to 100,000 baht ($4,475) as well as face jail time. A statement from the hotel said: "Receiving multiple false and defamatory reviews over a period can be extremely damaging, especially, during these incredibly difficult times."
Tripadvisor has temporarily suspended submissions of reviews of the hotel, and is investigating the incident with the US Embassy in Thailand.
Keep that in mind next time you're about to write a bad review.
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