Saturday, August 5, 2017

Saturday, August 05, 2017

An internet appeal has gone out to raise funds for a former counsellor at a drugs and alcohol rehab centre in Koh Samui after he was arrested on drugs related charges in Pattaya.

Cash is being sought for Dee Dario, a Briton, who has been involved 12 step cognitive behaviour courses around Thailand, who is banged up in Pattaya Remand Prison.

The crowd funding appeal is somewhat controversial as the cash is being sought to ‘reduce his sentence’. And Dee Dario has been widely accused of ripping off families with drug addicted sons and daughters to the tune of many thousands of dollars after relapsing into drugs again himself.

From posts on the crowd funding site it appears Dario, who was involved as a counsellor and fitness instructor The White Pearl Resort and Rehab on Koh Samui and billed as Facility Director, Head Counsellor and Fitness Director at ‘Second Chance Rehab’ on Koh Samui, had run off with client funds and was thus cheating people he had promised to cure.

However other posters stated how he had helped them with their problems and were full of praise.

He apparently studied person centred counselling at the North London University - one of those new universities, this one situated off London’s Holloway Road, which has now been merged into
the London Metropolitan University, after recovering from drugs addiction.

The 'White Pearl' was founded by, according to the Samui Times ‘recovering drug addicts’ (but I hope they mean ‘fully recovered’) Alvaro Lopez and Lars Olsson.  

Dee Dario himself received gratuitous exposure in the Samui Times for his keep fit classes and appears to have been quite a popular figure when not under the influence. When I last looked his family in the UK had raised about £2,500 of a target of £5000.

The problems remain whether there might be more deserving causes in jail with him and what does reduction of sentence mean exactly?  You cannot pay for a reduction of sentence unless you are repaying a victim, but in Thailand you can pay bail and disappear entirely.

In the first instance, there is at least one victim on the site who insists it’s not about money but the betrayal and abuse of youngsters in trouble.

The point of this story must be obvious to some readers of this site. Be very careful with drug rehabs in Thailand. It is not unusual to find them staffed by former drug addicts, who themselves have been through cognitive behavioural therapy. 

This I understand does indeed help addicts come off drugs. But it does not necessarily get rid of all the underlying problems.  And former addicts obviously know how to scam and steal because that’s how they survived to supply their habit.

Who can forget Simon Gunn, formerly of the Richmond Primary Care Trust and for the Hounslow Drug and Alcohol Action team? He started a rehab called ‘Channah’ based on Koh Chang and later near Kanchanaburi, which was the subject of a glowing report in the Bangkok Post.

We exposed Simon on this site as an active crack addict who was feeding his habit from the US£35,000 monthly fees he charged clients at his rehab.

And sometimes of course people die in these clinics through unprofessional treatment – and as this is Thailand and nobody enforces regulations – nobody gets caught.

That happened after Americans, Simon Picone and Victor Cracknell from Buffalo, New York set up a clinic on the island of Koh Phangan to treat drug addicts with the drug Ibogaine, derived from the root of a tree found in Africa.

Both Americans fled the island after Thai police bungled the case of Australian Brodie Smith who died after being administered with a fatal dose.  

Dee Dario only charged £6000 a month for his drug recovery programme.

I hold no strong views on what people do to themselves with drugs. Though I have never been a user I have sampled stuff in the past.   I believe I have snorted a line of cocaine with a peer of the realm in an Edinburgh nightclub.  I also fell three flights down a stairwell at the old Phnom Penh Post newspaper after a party there at which ‘ganja soup’ was one of the delights, a matter I have also admitted in ‘The Times’ when I wrote a piece on my old friend Nate Thayer, the journalist who found Pol Pot.

As for Dee Dario, I am not a victim but I can sympathise with them, but I can also sympathise with the son in the U.K., who, even if he has not realised it yet, is dealing with a system in which he is going to find people a lot more dishonest than his dad. 



Stephen Shook said...

Were the drugs steroids?

michaeldee said...

Yeah, he`ll get some money from me NOT. Seems like karma to me. What goes round comes around.

leave Thailand to the Thais said...

Andrew. I'm surprised that you stated that you can't buy a reduced sentence. You certainly can if you pay the judge in the period given which is usually 7 days. For drugs, £5000 is not realistic. 20k minimum.
Example...An old friend got caught with 5 cocaine wraps. An oz of whatever they mix it with. I had to go and sort out . 1.Phoning his mother. 2. Telling her if she paid the judge 20k before his court appearance (extended 5 days)he would sentence him to 2 years. No cash then he would get 25 to life.
She paid. He got 2 years. Howz that for honesty.
People who don't pay or rather can't pay are the ones rotten in jail.
I'm not saying this happens every time but it happens

leave Thailand to the Thais said...

Steroids are legal in Thailand. Probably yaba

Andrew Drummond said...

I don't think I said you can't pay a judge. They are notorious for accepting bribes - but nobody of course has shown the receipts. You can't do it legally. And if would be odd to crowd fund an act of corruption.

Ann Arexia said...

Forgive me if I appear somewhat naive here, but are these payments to Judges referred to above "under the table?" In plain and simple English, bribes - as mentioned by AD?
Or are they official as in fines? Properly recorded and documented and paid into the Exchequer.
If they are bribes to the Judiciary, this is a deplorable situation. What is being done about this blatant corruption and why is it being tolerated?
What a disgraceful, disgusting state of affairs.

Tarquinius Rex said...

Leave Thailand's comment has totally confused me. I always thought that "ya ba" was anything BUT legal in Thailand.
Steroids yes - but can ya Bay be classified as a steroid?
Genuine query btw.

Andrew Drummond said...

Dee Dario was arrested for possession of 18 gms of methamphetamine. Sources in side Nong Plalai Prison indicate that he is using 'Mo' and Unity Law to strike his deal. Mo has been exposed before on this site. It usually costs a lot more than £5000 to make such an amount of drugs disappear.

Statmonkey said...

So we have reached a point in society where whether you committed a crime or not has no relevance on whether you should face the consequences of your actions and where you "crowdsource" your bribe payments to escape justice and no one looks askance at either action. How is it right that someone who has never broken a law has no more rights and priviledges than (or is expected to pay for the crimes of) those that flout the law. I guess I'm getting old, these are not the values or the rules I live by.

JusticeBrit said...

Rex, Leave thailand meant steroids legal, yabba not legal and thats probably what in trouble for! hope that clears it up!

leave Thailand to the Thais said...

once the drug amount is out then there is no chance. An ounce becomes a gram if you can pay.I didn't realise it was Meth he was caught with. 5k won't help him now. His ads is grass.

leave Thailand to the Thais said...

It's under the table of course but the table is glass. Thai police make their pay up by stopping tourists. The higher the rank the bigger the prize. = boiler room shares. sex trade.It's big business. Big business = big money..Thailand breathes Corruption.

jules in KL said...

Thailand breathes corruption but so do most countries in the region.

250,000 policemen on an average of Baht 14,000 per month, starting salary is about Baht 8,000. That is why you can pay Baht50 instead of getting a ticket.

Judges are better paid but a career judge is educated and capable of earning more in private practice than at the Ministry of Justice. They are paid well to deter them from accepting bribes, but the bribes on larger cases are so high that anyone would be tempted. In practice the appointment to the judiciary itself is corrupt.

So where does this leave you if caught in the region or needing to use the courts for ordinary business? Digging deep in your pockets!!!

I cannot give exact priced examples in Thailand but I can in Indonesia. It is $20 - $30000 to get a judicial appointment that pays $300 per month. And then each month requires a kick upwards or you will be in limbo with no cases assigned. Benefit is ability to levy your own fee on each case, for example a simple paper releasing monies in the bank to probate for example, which requires no labor or bending of laws, is 10-15% of the sum being released. A paper confirming birth (no birth certificate applied for within 28 days) can run $150 to $300 and then there is a $4 fee to pay to the court on top.

Thailand has not quite got to the depths of Indonesia's institutional corruption, yet!!

Tarquinius Rex said...

You seem to know your stuff, Jules. But I find all this syndicated, organized corruption on the part of the Judiciary and Police in Thailand and Indonesia astonishing.
Simply put, are there no authorities in existence in those countries, whose remit it is to go after these corrupt officials?
Is there no body such as the Independent Commission Against Corruption in Hong Kong to take action against these people?
All these corrupt officials should be locked up for a VERY long time - as they would be in more enlightened jurisdictions.
(Read : "the West").

jules in KL said...


This is institutionalised corruption that has been rooted in the pay and earning structures of civil servants in many countries in the region for a very very long time.

I can speak more authoritatively about Indonesia as i see more of it from the inside than I have ever done in Thailand.

It reached its pinnacle under Suharto, who organised a number of pyramidial structures within the police, army, immigration and ll other forms of the civil service to funnel money to himself and his cronies. This has lead to under the table payments to get an official junior post on any of these organisations, more payments to get promoted etc. and then a greed for money to keep advancing and keep earning.

This has left all such organisations weak and venal.

Anti corruption organisations are no different. They do catch people but if the pay off is big enough, they do not proceed. Little people get caught, not big fish.

And it is not a question of englightenment, these people are not stupid. The problem is that they have entered a system which only works if you stick to the rules, and you will struggle financially if you do not.

The remedy, if the people want one (and it is a lot easier to get what you want if you have money), is to decrease the size of the organisations and pay them a lot better. But who wants higher taxes?

Ann Arexia said...

Thank you for a comprehensive explanation, Jules, of the situation regarding corruption in places like Indonesia & Thailand.
I still maintain, however, that not places in Asia are the same. I mention Hong Kong as being comparatively "clean," thanks to the presence and activities of the ICAC, and obviously Singapore must be included in the same category.
But at the end the day this is a Thai-centric site and we should stick to commenting on Thailand.

Norman Jay said...

The reality of it is over 0.3 of a gram of ICE is 6 years in prison. 45 days just for having it in your system. Thailand are well aware of the drug problem . ICE is the worst problem they have with large sentences. They are in the midst of trying to help people with drug addictions in Thailand now. But the reality is that he had 18 grams on him. This is Intent to distribute amount which is really bad. He could serve a long time for this. I have heard of instances where the amount would be 1.8 and the point was not legible however. Thailand is giving out higher sentences for foreigners! He will be lucky if he gets 10 years. Dee has worked hard recovering from his addiction. I cant see why he would have 18 grams on him though if he was making enough money in Thailand helping addicts. I have no problem him asking the addicts he has helped of his friends to help him but crowdfunding!!! In my opinion he must have relapsed which can happen very easily to drug addicts especially with abundance of money. With his presence on the internet and good he has done in thailand. I hope the judge commutes his sentence and sends him back to the UK never to return.

Megalodon said...

Norman, I cannot see the hope as expressed in your last couple of sentences coming to fruition. I believe the reality is, rightly or wrongly, that he will go down for a very long time.

Norman James said...
This comment has been removed by the author.