Central ThailandCrime

Murder in the temple – don’t drink and pray

When 36 year old Banjerd Yimchoi and his friend 32 year old friend Theerayut Tumorn went to a concert at Plak Raet temple in Phitsanulok province last week, no one could have suspected how the murder in the temple would unfold.

The pair had gone with their boss, construction contractor Pratheep Hinart, and started drinking heavily at his place before continuing their sesh at the temple, despite the monks’ complaints.

As the concert wound down, Pratheep sloped off to find more booze and agreed to meet the pair back at his pickup, parked by the refectory. According to the Bangkok Post, Banjerd said he turned up as arranged but his friend Theerayut, new in town, had made the fatal mistake of wandering off alone and had no phone.

After failing to find him, Banjerd asked concert organisers to broadcast an announcement calling him back.

Banjerd said…

“When Theerayut turned up, speaking as his concerned elder, I warned him against wandering off alone as he was new to the area. However, Theerayut was unhappy with my warning and hit me.

“We fought but I was no match for him, so I took out my knife and stabbed him in the neck.”

CCTV cameras show Banjerd calmly leaving the temple and heading for home by foot.

Banjerd had known the contractor for about 10 years, and had started a new job for Pratheep a few days before. He brought his new friend Theerayut along to do him a favour.

Theerayut and Banjerd are both well-known to police. Both have been jailed for drug offences before. Banjerd was released about a year ago, Theerayut just last month.

Pratheep said that when returned with more booze, the fight was already over and Theerayut was lying dead in a pool of blood, murdered in the temple. He said…

“I went home, and Banjerd called. I urged him to surrender and he agreed. I picked him up the next morning and we went to the police.”

Police have charged Banjerd with intentional homicide.

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