Loan shark shoots debtor 8 times in the head in southern Thailand

A loan shark chose revenge over repayments on Sunday when he shot a debtor eight times in the head outside a tea shop in Songkhla province in southern Thailand.

At 8pm, officers at Khuan Meed Police Station received a call that someone had been shot dead in the Chana district.

Police found the body of 42 year old Chusit [surname withheld] slumped over in a pool of blood, having been shot eight times in the head with a .380 pistol. Eight bullet casings were collected as evidence.

Eyewitnesses told police they saw Chusit walk into the tea shop and order a drink. The gunman appeared and shouted “bang bang bang” causing Chusit to turn around and walk back out of the shop. Then, he pulled out a gun and shot Chusit eight times in the face. The culprit rode away on a motorbike.

Relatives told police that before Chusit left home yesterday evening, he received a call from a loan shark summoning him to the tea shop. The loan shark told him to bring the money he owed to the shop at 8pm, so he went.

Police are using CCTV footage to attempt to track down Chusit’s killer.

Last month, a loan shark allegedly threw a deadly military grenade at a woman’s house in Phattalung province, southern Thailand, after she failed to make repayments. The latch was removed but for some reason, the bomb didn’t explode. Explosive Ordnance Disposal officers successfully destroyed the grenade and the woman fled the province in fear.

The month before, a hitman shot dead a 62 year old, also in Phattalung province, on behalf of a loan shark. The debtor allegedly borrowed 30,000 baht with an interest rate of 30% per month and was killed when he couldn’t meet the repayments.

In July, a loan shark broke into a debtor’s home in Phetchabun province and spread stinky fermented fish all over her home and belongings.

The prevalence of loan shark revenge in Thailand reveals the desperate economic situation faced by many Thais in the present day. Thailand’s household debt is at an all-time high and people are left feeling like taking out a high-interest loan from an illegal loan creditor is their only option, even if it risks their safety.

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Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.