The Mafia and Motorcycle Taxi Drivers in Bangkok, Thailand



There’s an interesting video on the Bangkok Post’s website about motorcycle taxi drivers in Bangkok. Apparently, The Association of Motorcycle Taxi Drivers has complained to the Transport Ministry that they’re sick and tired of paying “protection money” to the mafia. If they don’t, they’re beaten up, or worse, and they want the Transport Ministry to do something about it.

Of course, the ministry says they’ll look into it, but really, will anything change? Mafia extortion in Thailand with motorcycle taxi drivers, has been a problem for years. The guys at the end of my street have been complaining about it for the decade I’ve lived here, and nothing has ever been done to change it.

There’s too much corruption in Thailand and, at the end of the day, so many of the “rich and powerful” are involved in it that it’s only the “little guys” who suffer. So, no, it’s hardly likely to change, as the Transport Ministry will do what they always do — sweep it under the rug as soon as they find out somebody rich enough to be “untouchable” is involved.

The video shows some of the problems typical motorcycle taxi drivers face with the mafia, including having unlicensed rival taxi drivers set up right next to them. And they put up with all of this, working six to seven days a week, for around 13,000 baht ($419) a month.