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More tuk-tuk trouble in Phuket

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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More tuk-tuk trouble in Phuket | The Thaiger

PATONG, PHUKET: A Canadian tourist was hospitalized after being punched repeatedly in an attack involving a tuk-tuk driver yesterday afternoon.

Ivan Bob Anwar, 51, told the Gazette that he was punched five times in the attack, which resulted in a large gash above his left eyebrow requiring five stitches. He also sustained a bloody nose and bruising to his face.

Treatment charges at Patong Hospital came to 2,000 baht.

The attack was the result of a dispute over a one-minute taxi ride.

Mr Anwar and his wife arrived in Phuket on January 4 for a three-day holiday.

But after spending one night in their hotel in the north end of Patong, they decided to move to a quieter location further north in Kalim.

Mr Anwar, a teacher living in Japan, said he and his wife flagged down a tuk-tuk outside their hotel at 1pm yesterday.

After a brief negotiation with the driver, Mr Anwar and his wife agreed to pay 150 baht for the short trip to their new hotel.

“But when we arrived at our new hotel [one minute later] I told the driver that he had charged us too much,” he said.

Mr Anwar offered the driver a discounted fare of 100 baht, feeling this was all the trip was worth and got out of the tuk-tuk.

At this point, Mr Anwar said the driver telephoned a second man who then arrived on the scene almost immediately.

“The driver then got out of the tuk-tuk and punched me four or five times in the face,” said Mr Anwar.

The second man was reported to have restrained Mr Anwar during the attack. Both men then fled the scene in the tuk-tuk, Mr Anwar said.

After witnessing the attack, workers from a nearby hotel took the bloodied Mr Anwar and his wife to Kathu Police Station in the hotel’s mini-bus.

At about 3pm, tuk-tuk driver Tassanarit Damthong, 30, handed himself in at Kathu Police Station.

Mr Tassanarit was promptly arrested and charged with assault.

When the Gazette arrived at Kathu Police Station, Mr Tassanarit was in a holding cell, having been denied bail.

Mr Tassanarit’s boss, Natdanai Chaowana, was at the police station. He told the Gazette he didn’t understand why bail had been denied, claiming Mr Anwar was the one at fault.

“The Canadian guy was rude and swore and also kicked him [Mr Tassanarit] first,” said Mr Chaowana.

Mr Chaowana also said that the fee was agreed between the driver and Mr Anwar, and admitted that it was the standard rate in the area.

Mr Anwar and Kathu Police were due to appear at Phuket Provincial Court to file assault charges.

Police said they were still searching for the second man alleged to have been involved in the attack.

Mr Anwar and his wife were due to leave Phuket on January 7. He said he has no plans to return to Phuket.

“I like Thailand, but don’t think I will ever come back to Phuket after this. Maybe I’ll try Krabi instead,” he said.

— Atchaa Khamlo



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Phuket

Slow loris released back into Phuket forest

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Slow loris released back into Phuket forest | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Department of National Parks

Officers from of the Khao Phra Thaeo Non-Hunting Area have helped in the release of a slow loris back into the wild yesterday.

The Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation reports that the head of Khao Phra Thaeo Non-Hunting Area, Pongchart Chueahom, yesterday released the slow loris to the Khao Phra Thaeo Non-Hunting Are in Thalang.

The slow loris was found near a furniture factory in Thalang last week. It was being treated at a pet hospital before being handed over to Khun Pongchart when it was ready to be set free.

Slow loris released back into Phuket forest | News by The Thaiger Slow loris released back into Phuket forest | News by The Thaiger

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Phuket

Seastead structure dragged back to shore by Royal Thai Navy

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Seastead structure dragged back to shore by Royal Thai Navy | The Thaiger

A floating seastead has today been towed by a naval vessel back to the Port of Phuket in Cape Panwa. Meanwhile the Deputy PM Wissanu Krea-ngam is challenging the owners and builders of the structure to take the Thai Government and Navy to the International Court of Justice.

The Royal Thai Navy’s Third Fleet ventured out with a group of reporters on Saturday to inspect the floating seastead, the first of about 20 planned Ocean Builders for the open waters about 22km from Phuket’s Koh Racha Yai.

Nothing valuable was found on board the octagon-shaped steel and aluminium structure which was attached to a floating platform.

Two vessels were used in today’s operation. The living quarters were detached and placed on the first vessel and the second towed the floating platform to the shore for safe keeping pending legal action against its owner as well as the builder, Ocean Builders Company.

Dr. Wissanu said yesterday that Thai authorities were authorised to remove or dismantle the floating housing unit with or without the consent of its owner after finding the structure could pose a threat to Thai national security and sovereignty in accordance with Article 119 of the Criminal Code.

He said that the structure also posed an obstacle to vessels and was located not far from an oil rig.

Regarding the threat by Ocean Builders Company to sue the Thai government in the International Court of Justice for the removal, the deputy PM says he welcomes the move, noting that no government anywhere would allow a seastead settlement near their maritime territory.

Seasteader Chad Andrew Edwartowski and his Thai wife, Mrs. Nadia Summergirl, are wanted by the Thai police for questioning after Thai immigration revoked the American’s non-immigrant visa and blacklisted him.

SOURCE: Thai PBS

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Phuket

Phuket taxi slams into tree in Phattalung

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Phuket taxi slams into tree in Phattalung | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Phattalung Rescue

Two people have sustained serious injuries after a Phuket taxi slammed into a tree in Phattalung last night.

Phattalung rescue workers were notified of the accident in Mueang Pattalung District at 7.57pm last night (Sunday).

They arrived at the scene to find the Phuket registered taxi resting in front of the big tree on the side of the road near a temple. The front of the vehicle had extensive damage following the collision.

The two people who sustained serious injuries were 58 year old Wanchai Srithong and 64 year old Jamras Srithong. They were both taken to the Phattalung Hospital.

Pattalung City Police are continuing their investigation. There has been no explanation given at this stage as to why a Phuket taxi was in Phattalung.

Phuket taxi slams into tree in Phattalung | News by The Thaiger Phuket taxi slams into tree in Phattalung | News by The Thaiger

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