The female foreign tourist in a butt-exposing photograph and bare feet up on a wall at a revered Buddhist temple in Thailand that went viral and heavily criticized for being culturally-insensitive has been found. Her male companion who took the offensive photo was also apprehended.
The two were arrested on Saturday at Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok. They have been identified as Nadica Curcin and Vladimir Veizovic, both 31. The pair turned out to be Serbian tourists. They were arrested on obscenity charges and breaching Section 388 of the Criminal Code.
The pair admitted their guilt and paid a fine of THB5,000 or $160 each, the maximum punishment for the said crime. Tourist police said they were released after paying the penalty and admission of guilt.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">No Buts About It: Butt-exposing woman at Buddhist temple found and fined <a href="https://t.co/oT3q8hbSFZ">https://t.co/oT3q8hbSFZ</a> via <a href="https://twitter.com/coconutsdotco?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@coconutsdotco</a></p>— Coconuts Bangkok (@CoconutsBangkok) <a href="https://twitter.com/CoconutsBangkok/status/978149062531735552?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">March 26, 2018</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
Many Thais expressed anger with the photos that went viral for being disrespectful. The photos were taken last week at Bangkok’s Temple of the Emerald Buddha and the woman was photographed lounging with her legs up on a wall, bare feet on the ledge as her dress rode up and exposed far more than is modest at a religious site.
Bangkok’s Temple of the Emerald Buddha is considered one of the “holiest sites” in the country.
The pair expressed surprise with the charges and said they honestly did not know that their actions were illegal.
Thai authorities have always taken disrespect displayed by foreign tourists in their holy sites seriously. There was the case recently of two male foreign tourists who deliberately exposed their butts, too, while having their photo taken at Wat Arum. They were also charged, arrested and ordered to spend two weeks in Thai jail. Thais were also enraged with the said photo. The gay men were also kicked out of the country. They have since deleted their Instagram account where they initially posted the offensive photos.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">US couple arrested in Thailand after exposing their butts at temple: <a href="https://t.co/jL7FdOiotS">https://t.co/jL7FdOiotS</a> via <a href="https://twitter.com/AOL?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@AOL</a><br>I hope they get 7 years for the disrespect they showed in Thailand church & I hope that they cannot get back into our country. What a Shame to do that.</p>— Darlene Houlton (@DarleneHoulton) <a href="https://twitter.com/DarleneHoulton/status/938827962647920640?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">December 7, 2017</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>