Mother of Phuket murder victim tells of her pain

PHUKET: The mother of Wanphen Pienjai, the bar hostess whose body was found stuffed in a suitcase in Phuket last week, has spoken of her anguish over the murder of her daughter.

Sa-ard Maliwan, 59, told the Gazette she is praying every day for police to catch the killer.

He deserves to be punished hard for what he did to my daughter,” she said.

Mrs Sa-ard lives in Petchabun Province with Ms Wanphen’s two children, a 12-year-old boy and a two-year-old girl.

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Ms Wanphen, 33, had worked in a doll factory but moved to Kata to work as a hostess at Sweethearts Bar in April this year, Mrs Sa-ard said.

The work enabled Ms Wanphen to support her mother and two children.

Ms Sa-ard said she had “no idea how to move on” after the death of her daughter, but that her cousins had been visiting constantly to give her support.

She was the only one who supported the family,” Mrs Sa-ard said. “When she earned a lot, she sent us a lot. I live on about 100 baht a day.”

Ms Wanphen used to phone home often. Her last call was on June 16, two days before she left Sweethearts Bar with a bearded Caucasian man now being sought by police.

On June 25, police called Mrs Sa-ard to give her the devastating news.

When I saw the body I was sure it was her because of the scar on her stomach,” she said.

The identity of the body has yet to be confirmed through DNA analysis. It is unlikely the family can afford to return the body home to Petchabun, and the cremation will probably be held on Phuket.

This afternoon, Phuket City Police Superintendent Wanchai Ekpornpit released a new sketch of the prime suspect which depicts the man with a thicker beard and harder features than before.

Police are offering a 50,000 baht reward for information leading to the arrest of the killer.

Anyone with information regarding the case should call the Phuket City Police on 076-212115. Or, if you have workable English and need a translation to Thai for reporting purposes, call the Phuket Gazette on 076-273555, and ask for Khun Nee, Khun Jane or Khun Joy.

For more details on this story that has stirred the wrath of Phuket, see ‘Hunt for a Monster’ on the front page of this week’s Phuket Gazette, distributed to newsstands island wide this afternoon. (Digital subscribers click here.)

— Sitthipong Nongkaew

Phuket News
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