Authorities charge 3 suspects in murder of Chinese businessman in South Thailand

Photo by Naewna.


The authorities officially charged three suspects involved in the murder of a Chinese businessman in South Thailand‘s Trang province.

Yesterday morning (May 18), over 30 police officers from Mueang Trang Police Station and Trang Provincial Police Station held a reenactment of the incident. More than 20 relatives of the deceased businessman, including his children and wife, attended the reenactment.

Only two of the suspects attended the reenactment, including 22 year old Natdanai ‘J’, and 19 year old Nattaphon ‘It’. The third suspect, 17 year old Fai, did not attend the reenactment for legal reasons due to being a minor.

The reenactment lasted only 20 minutes as relatives of the victim’s wife were about to attack the suspects, The Phuket Express reported.

The Trang Provincial Police Commander, Major General Chaowalit Leangsupong, said that Fai is currently in custody and being questioned at the Children’s and Family Home in Trang.

Traces of sleeping pills and alcohol were found in a blood test conducted on the victim, Zhirui Li. All three suspects are now facing charges of intentional murder and theft.

As of press time, all the suspects have been denied bail and are being held in custody.

During the arrest this week, the authorities confiscated several items, including a knife, the victim’s sedan, 11 bank books, five ATM cards, one credit card, 11,700 baht in cash, two passports, and a wallet.

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In the latest development on the killing of a Chinese businessman in South Thailand‘s Trang province, police have caught three suspects believed to be involved. One of the suspects says he stabbed the victim to death.

Colonel Sakda Jaroenkun, Deputy Commander of the Region 9 Police, told The Phuket Express that police in Satun successfully arrested three suspects identified as 22 year old Natdanai ‘J’, 19 year old Nattaphon ‘It’ and 17 year old and Fai. All three suspects are originally from the southern Satun province.

During the arrest, the authorities confiscated several items, including a knife, the victim’s sedan, 11 bank books, five ATM cards, one credit card, 11,700 baht in cash, two passports, and a wallet.

One of the suspects, Natdanai, confessed to the police, providing details of the incident. He revealed…

“Fai is my friend. The Chinese man, Zhirui Li, asked me in an online chat for sexual services with Fai. This was the third time he had gone with Fai at this resort. While they were at the resort in Trang, Fai called me and said that the Chinese man refused to pay her and struck and attacked her. Fai reportedly put sleeping medicine in his alcoholic drink to calm him down but it did not affect him.

“I asked Fai if she wanted me to kill him. She said do you dare or not. After that, I went into the resort room via a window that Fai opened for me while my friend Nattaphon, who was responsible for transportation, was waiting outside. I went into the room while the Chinese man was in the bathroom. I used a knife to stab and slash Li to death before all three of us sped away with his belongings and his sedan.”

The Region 9 police are continuing their investigation into the incident, noting that Fai is a minor under Thai law.

The victim, 43 year old Zhirui Li, was reportedly a rubber businessman in the Koh Lanta area and was married to a Thai woman with whom he had three children.

Police and emergency responders found Li with more than 20 stabs and slash wounds, including to his chest.

Crime NewsSouth Thailand News

Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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