School burned down for robbery netting 500 baht

PHOTO: Someone burned down a school building for 500 baht. (via Khaosod)

In Buri Ram, a desperate person burned down a school building to cover up a robbery that netted them just 500 baht. The Wat Kok Charoen Temple School was set ablaze on Friday and the unknown suspect in the arson attack left behind a bizarre note saying “I love the Prime Minister. I am sorry, I need money.”

The Phlapphla Chai District Police captain was alerted that the school was on fire and police and firefighters were dispatched immediately to the property. They arrived to find one building full of school equipment and furniture, including a gas tank, in flames. Firefighters set to work and prevented flames from spreading to other buildings on the campus and the fire was under control within an hour.

The building sustained significant damage and will require an entire rebuild, with floors and walls needing to be replaced. All the furniture and equipment inside were destroyed.

While police investigating the crime found marks on the doors indicating forced entry, the perpetrator who burned down the building may be someone associated or at least familiar with the school, as they were seemingly aware of surveillance measures in place. A security camera on site was turned, to prevent it from recording the arson, while two more cameras at the school were completely removed and burned. The server storing all the footage was wiped clean.

Keys were recovered from the building that unlocked the desks of all the teachers in the school and it appeared that the suspect attempted to access all the desks to search for money or valuables. In the end, it is believed the robber only managed to take 500 baht in cash.

An investigation is ongoing for the crime that did massive amounts of damage for such a minuscule payoff. The letter, with the apology explaining the person, just needed the money and a non-sequitur pledge of support for PM Prayut Chan-o-cha now serves as the key evidence in the case.

SOURCE: Thai Residents

Northern Thailand News

Neill Fronde

Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

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