Another suspect allegedly involved in a double murder in Nonthaburi over an 8-million-baht Buddha amulet has been arrested after 13 years on the run.
The suspect, Prawit Ketsakul, 56, was linked to the brutal murder of the mother and elder brother of the director-general of a public prosecution office.
Mr Prawit was wanted on an arrest warrant issued by the Nonthaburi provincial court on Sept 2, 2007 on charges of colluding in robbery causing death, murder and concealment of a body. He was apprehended on U-Thong Road in Muang district of Kanchanaburi, Pol Lt Gen Amphon Buarupporn said on Tuesday.
He was among six people wanted on arrest warrants over the brutal murders of Theerasak Theerachit and his mother Ratchanee Theerachit in Nonthaburi in 2007.
According to police, Ms Nusara Koncharoen, who was later named as the first defendant in the case; Mr Chao Makhunthod, the second defendant; and Thanee Sonklin, the third defendant gained entrance to Theerasak’s house in Pak Kred district of Nonthaburi on Aug 21, 2007 by pretending to show interest in a Buddha amulet Mr Theerasak was wearing.
They allegedly offered to buy it for 8 million baht. While studying the amulet, one of them hit Mr Theerasak’s head with a hammer until he collapsed. Since his mother witnessed the incident, the gang then killed her.
They later allegedly took the bodies of the two victims to their van, where Santi Chamnongphon, the fourth defendant and van driver, and Mr Prawit, the fifth defendant, were waiting inside. They then drove the van to Wat Mai Nongsanor in Chaiyaphum province, where they had hired Boonsong Singkhrong, an undertaker at the temple, to burn the bodies. However, some local residents saw what they were doing and alerted police.
Three of them – Mr Thanee, the van driver and the undertaker — were caught shortly afterwards. Mr Prawit was apprehended on Aug 17 after 13 years on the run, said Pol Lt Gen Amphon.
During the police interrogation, the suspect denied any involvement in the murders. Ms Nusara, the first defendant, died last year.
A source said Mrs Ratchanee was the mother of the director-general of the Udon Thani public prosecution office. When the crime occurred, her son was working as a prosecution specialist at the attorney-general office region 5 in Chiang Mai province.
Police were hunting down the last suspect, Mr Chao.