American Tourists Could Go to Prison for Taking Butt Selfies in Thailand

They posed bare-ass in front of a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, which could leave them behind bars for a decade.
Drew Schwartz
Brooklyn, US
November 29, 2017, 6:52pm
Photo by In Pictures Ltd./Corbis via Getty Images

There are a lot of ways tourists manage to piss off their hosts in foreign countries, from swimming blackout drunk across historic bodies of water to donning banana suits at some of the world's most revered ancient sites. And while most obnoxious Americans get off with a warning or a few dirty looks, a couple visiting a holy temple in Thailand may face much more serious consequences.

Earlier this week, a couple of American tourists in Bangkok were arrested for taking a photo of their bare asses in front of Bangkok's Wat Arun, a popular Buddhist temple, the Bangkok Post reports. Joseph and Travis Dasilva, a married couple from San Diego, California, have each been fined $153 dollars for the belfie, but they could still face up to 12 years in prison if the police pursue further charges.


The Daslivas ran a since-deleted joint Instagram account called traveling_butts, racking up 14,000 followers with photos of their rears in full view at various tourist attractions across the globe. Apparently baring ass on the internet had never been a problem for the two, until they got to Thailand. The country has pretty harsh anti-decency laws, especially when its religious sites are involved, the BBC reports.

The Dasilvas were put on a police watchlist after authorities noticed their photo, and were arrested at the airport on their way back to the US. They've already been fined for public nakedness and could be blacklisted from visiting the country again, but according to the Bangkok Post, police are looking to slap them with additional charges. The couple could face up to five years in prison for posting pornographic content online, and an additional seven for exposing themselves at a religious site.

According to the San Diego Gay and Lesbian News (SDGLN), the Dasilvas have hit up their home city's commissioner, Nicole Murray-Ramirez, for help with the fiasco.

"Though I am very disappointed in their actions, I am talking to US government officials to see what assistance we can give them,” Murray-Ramirez told SDGLN.

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