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Car-bomb insurgent identified

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Car-bomb insurgent identified
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Police said yesterday they have identified two out of the five or six militants behind the huge car-bomb in Narathiwat on Friday, even though information from 22 eyewitnesses was sketchy and of little use for investigators.

Deputy police chief Gen Jakthip Chaijinda said police would be in a position to seek court-issued arrest warrants for the suspects in a few weeks.

The forensics team had collected evidence from the scene and linked that with some intelligence to get a big picture of the attack, leading to a group of five or six suspects, he said.

Gen Jakthip did not reveal any clear information about the suspects but a police officer in Narathiwat said the suspects were operatives under Abdullah Urae’s unit, which stole the pickup truck from Songkhla that was used to make the car bomb.

The vehicle was the same one mobilized in an attack on the Makud Tambon Administration Office in Pattani’s Khok Pho district recently before it was turned into a car bomb.

Abdullah was already wanted in connection with the earlier attack, said the police source, adding that Gen Jakthip gave clear instructions in a meeting with senior police in Narathiwat yesterday to exert all efforts into arresting Abdullah.

However, an interrogation officer at the Narathiwat provincial police office said police had questioned 22 eyewitnesses, who were also victims of the bombing, but obtained no significant information for the case.

All had not paid attention to when the car loaded with explosives was brought into the area, said the officer, Pol Lt Sunet Thien-udom.

Such information could not lead to the arrest of anybody, he said.

The car bomb damaged dozens of homes and wounded 13 people, four of them seriously. As of yesterday, 10 were still in the hospital and Sergeant Korakot Korthong remained in intensive care.

The bomb was hidden in a pickup parked in front of a karaoke bar, not far from a Chinese shrine. The blast was detonated early in the afternoon. With an estimated 50kg of explosive it did major damage in the downtown area of the town in the far South.

The provincial rehabilitation center has said it will compensate the karaoke bar and all victims. Officials in Narathiwat estimate that some 15 million baht is needed to cover the property damage. The rehabilitation center has paid out 1.7mn baht to 30 people already, an official at the center said.

Police yesterday warned of another possible car bomb attack in the southern commercial hub of Hat Yai in Songkhla. Officials beefed up security in the district by setting up checkpoints at 38 places in the town.

Predominantly Muslim Narathiwat, Yala, Pattani and some districts in Songkhla have been steeped in violence since early 2004. Thai authorities have been struggling to contain insurgent-orchestrated violence in the decade since then. More than 6,300 people, mostly local Muslims, have been killed.

The military, which leads the campaign to maintain peace and order, stepped up security but sometime they confuse locals.

Last June, the Fourth Army Area asked people in the deep South not to wear helmets while driving their motorbikes in the cities – so that security officials can see their faces.

Yesterday, many motorists in Narathiwat complained that the measure exposed them to risk of road accidents. Traffic discipline cannot be enforced strictly in the deep South, as officials suspect anyone who covers his face.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

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Thailand

News of American sued over bad Koh Chang hotel review has everyone talking

The Thaiger & The Nation

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News of American sued over bad Koh Chang hotel review has everyone talking | The Thaiger

After news hit of an American being arrested and sued for defamation over leaving a bad review about a Koh Chang hotel on TripAdvisor, many are taking to the internet to voice their opinions on the issue. The Sea View Resort owners say it tried in vain to negotiated with Wesley Barnes after he posted the reviews, but he continued to post completely untrue comments.

The owners released a five-page statement after the news of it suing the American gained widespread attention. You can read their response HERE. Then, Barnes submitted his own response detailing the situation which was also published online.

News of American sued over bad Koh Chang hotel review has everyone talking | News by The ThaigerNews of American sued over bad Koh Chang hotel review has everyone talking | News by The Thaiger

Now, the story has gained even more attention as netizens have begun posting their opinions on the controversial issue of Thailand’s defamation laws. Below, are some of those posts on The Thaiger’s Facebook page.

“Can someone clarify for me Thailand’s position on people leaving honest bad reviews as my girlfriend says it’s fine to leave a bad review of a business and it’s not defamation if honest of course? I have heard people say that you simply can’t leave bad honest reviews at all here but that sounds ridiculous. The thing about many Thais is that they think they’re beyond reproach. They can’t accept criticism because it’s not aligned with their grandiose self-image. Many also have a torrid time when it comes to ownership of their own actions and decision making.”

“OMG! He is arrested for a review.?! I know of an expat in Malaysia that wrote a bad review about a Thai-owned resort in Penang and he was sued as well. Be careful with what you share in that neck of the woods.”

“It’s one thing to leave a bad review but to throw in “modern slavery” remarks escalates to thai defamation law. He shouldn’t be arrested for his comments but you need to respect the country laws no matter how crazy they seem compared to your own country. This press is going to negatively affect the business way more than that review would have done though.”

“The owner should have settled with the review platforms privately and move on. I would hardly hold up Trip Advisor as a beacon of truth, however some people write extremely personal and vindictive comments that go beyond a review, in an attempt to gain product or refunds in return, this is an absolute fact, and hopefully this might make people think before they start writing reviews that are not exactly honest, I have read stories critical of the General Managers because they didn’t contact the guests, some really petty reviews by rather petty people.”

If Barnes is indeed found to be guilty of defamation, he could spend up to 2 years in prison and pay up to a 200,000 baht fine.

SOURCE: Chiang Rai Times

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Phuket police arrest 6 after finding large amounts of methamphetamine in raid

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Phuket police arrest 6 after finding large amounts of methamphetamine in raid | The Thaiger

Phuket Provincial Police have arrested 6 people after finding large amounts of methamphetamine and other drugs during a raid. One suspect alone allegedly had 7.6 kilograms of crystal meth (ya ice) and over 12,500 methamphetamine pills (ya bah). 29 year old Surasak ‘Bank’ Wijit and 27 year old Panida ‘Mei’ Saeyang were arrested at an apartment car park in Soi Lookkaew, Moo 6, Rassada, in eastern Phuket, after they were found in possession of the drugs.

Police also found 2 mobile phones and a red Honda PCX, registered in Phuket, as evidence. Both suspects have been charged with posessing a Category 1 drug with the intent to sell.

Other suspects arrested at the same time include 36 year old from Chiang Rai, 42 year old Sarawut ‘An’ Srichanon, from Ranong and 31 year old Pornthep ‘Iew’ Thepchampa, who were charged with the same crimes in Chalong after police found more drugs in their possession. 33 year old Kamon ‘Kung’ Sae-ngow, was arrested as well after police found kratom juice and leaves at a house in Rassada. He was taken to Phuket City Police station and was charged with a Category 5 drug possession.

SOURCE:The Phuket News

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Phuket Muay Thai fighter is the first Thai national to compete in UFC

The Thaiger

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Phuket Muay Thai fighter is the first Thai national to compete in UFC | The Thaiger

The upcoming Ultimate Fighting Championship Fight Night event in Abu Dhabi will feature Thailand’s only national marking her third fight with the UFC, the world’s largest mixed martial arts competition. 24 year old Loma Lookboonme, from Burirram in northeastern Thailand, will fight in the event on October 3, 2020.

Loma is a Muay Thai fighter who has adapted her MMA skills to fight in the UFC where she currently trains at the Tiger Muay Thai gym in Phuket. Loma qualified for the national team at the age of 19 and has fought in over 12 nations worldwide. She currently trains 6 days a week starting daily at 6:30am with a 3 kilometre run. In the UFC, she will be competing against China’s Angela Lee who is the undisputed champion of the 52 kilogram fist weight category.

Phuket Muay Thai fighter is the first Thai national to compete in UFC | News by The Thaiger

Loma’s parents are former Muay Thai fighters and her 2 sisters currently compete as well. She reportedly started training at 8 years old after being inspired by her father, whom she describes as her “hero.”

Like most Thais in such fighting sports, Muay Thai offers a way to rise out of poverty-and fighting for the UFC can be financially lucrative. But Loma says her only Thai sponsor is the gym where she trains, with the rest of her sponsors being from foreign brands. She says she is trying to get more Thai sponsors but feels that maybe she needs to win the UFC first before Thai brands notice her.

Loma lost her last fight and says her new opponent gives her nothing to lose. She says her goal is to get into the Top 10, but is not sure when it will happen. Loma says for now, it would be good to fight against someone in the Top 10 to help her prepare for her future.

FULL INTERVIEW: Thisrupt.co

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