Suspected Jimi Sandhu hitman in Canadian jail wants to face trial in Thailand

A Canadian man accused of being a hitman in the murder of Indian gangster Jimi Sandhu in Phuket last year said he wants to face trial in Thailand despite having to potentially face the death penalty.

Canadian Forces veteran Matthew Dupre is one suspect accused of murdering Sandu in February last year on behalf of a Canadian-based gang.

Sandu did not look concerned as he parked his rental car outside a luxury villa in Phuket at 10.32pm on February 4, 2022.

Moments later two gunmen jumped out from around the corner and shot Sandhu 10 times until he dropped dead, captured by CCTV footage.

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After moving from India to British Columbia at seven years old, Sandhu was deported from Canada due to criminal activity in 2016 and managed to enter Thailand using a fake passport.

Sandu was part of the United Nations gang who were in a bloody war with the Wolfpack Alliance, two groups involved with drug trafficking.

Suspected hitman Dupre has been detained since his arrest in Alberta, Canada, on February 20, 2022. His next court date is on Monday.

Thai court requested to have Dupre, who denies the charges, extradited to Thailand where he possibly faces the death penalty. His lawyers were against it.

However, Dupre’s lawyer Maurice Collard said his client wants to face trial in Thailand to clear his name.

Dupre has “full confidence” in his innocence and legal team said, Maurice.

Gene Karl Lahrkamp, the second suspected hitman in the case – also a Canadian Forces veteran – died in a plane crash in Ontario in Canada in May last year.

Dupre is “optimistic” about getting justice in Thailand, said his lawyer.

However, the Thai police are confident Dupre is the killer and claim they have “extensive” footage of the crime as well as DNA evidence found on discarded clothing and from inside a rental car used in the crime.

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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.

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