Christopher Paul Neil was already in jail in Thailand for sexually abusing a young boy in Thailand. Today, he was sentenced to six more years.

What does this have to do with TravelPod? This is a pretty heinous crime, and I thought it would be worthwhile to take a candid look into what some people are saying about Thai prisons. Most Westerners found in prison in Thailand are there for drug crimes, so here are a couple of stories I found written by TravelPod bloggers.

Thai prison

Brokedown Palace's version of a Thai prison

Petercrowe and Lisa visited a Westerner in Bangkok, back in 2005. This is what they had to say about the experience:

We quickly realised that any prisoner in this prison had been sentenced to a minimum 30 years imprisonment. We got to meet Steve Willcox and had about 20 minutes with him before he had to go back. He had initially been given the death sentence before having his sentence reduced to life, and then again reduced to 33 years. He has been there for just 2 years. He told us about the reason he was there, which incidentally was for possession of a large amount of drugs, and then gave us the details of his website which has his full story. We were able to buy him various items from the prison shop such as shampoo and soap etc., as well as some food and water. Just two days after Christmas it was the least we could do for him. Some of you may disagree with this based on your own ideas of right and wrong and no way would I even try to justify what he had done, however when you consider that the worst rapist or murderer in the UK would only be sentenced to 25 years and would probably serve much less, it makes you think again about the guys’ plight. All in all it was a harrowing thing to see and reading about it afterwards just made everything seem even worse.

-from “Having a beach of Christmas and New Year!“, Bangkok Thailand

Stain, the self-described “biggest hobo” relates the story of a man he met while traveling in the Philippines

He had been sitting on a beach in Ko Chang six years ago sharing a spliff with his mate. The next thing he knows a plain clothes Thai policeman put a handcuff on his wrist and he was taken away in a police van. His friend was not told where he was being taken too so effectively no one knew what was going to happen to him – apart from the police of course. I only say this because the length of time this guy spent in a Thai prison was equal to the length of time it took for his friend to track him down – 2 weeks!

– from “Stuck in Paradise“, Boracay, Philippines