Connect with us


Police arrest Phuket blockade leaders

Legacy Phuket Gazette




PHUKET: As part of an ongoing campaign to clean Phuket of all people deemed by police to be a threat to the island’s tourism industry, officers have arrested three people for involvement in major street blockades.

Police have arrest warrants for 23 people for their roles in the blockades, Lt Gen Panya Mamen, Commander of the Royal Thai Police Region 8 division, announced yesterday.

Three of them have presented themselves to police.

Chakkapong Limsakul, 40, was taken into custody for his role in the March 4 blockade in Patong, during which 200 tuk-tuk drivers blocked all roads into the resort town. The blockade ended with Phuket’s police commander agreeing to the drivers’ demands, which included transferring the Patong Police superintendent (story here).

“Arrest warrants have been issued for 10 suspects for the Patong blockade,” Gen Panya said. “One of the suspects has surrendered himself. Police are questioning him for more information.”

Somsak Pasarnphan, 41, one of the 10 suspects wanted for the April 24 blockade of Thepkrasattri Road in Mak Prok, Thalang, surrendered himself to Tah Chat Chai Police at about 3pm yesterday, but denied any involvement in the blockade.

“That day I dropped off a customer at a hotel in Mai Khao. On the way home, I saw the blockade and had no idea what was going on,” he said.

“Somebody pointed for me to pull over my car. I was there just looking at what was happening.”

The blockade, staged by angry villagers over the handling of the investigation into the rape of a five-month-pregnant local woman (story here), saw thousands of people caught in Phuket’s biggest traffic jam on record.

The blockade lasted eight hours, and was finally lifted after Phuket Governor Maitri Inthusut agreed to villagers’ demands (story here).

The third suspect to voluntarily hand himself over to police was Sirichai Saengprichakul, 42.

Mr Sirichai was wanted for his involvement in the blockade at “100 bodies curve” on Chao Fa West Road, in Wichit, in April (story here).

“We are questioning him and arrest warrants will be issued today for two more suspects for this blockade,” Gen Panya noted.

Mr Sirichai expressed regret for the Chao Fa West Road blockade.

“I am sorry about that. I will not do it again.” he said.

Mr Sirichai explained that the blockade was staged to stop people from dying at the lethal curve.

“That curve was very dangerous. A lot of people have been killed there,” Mr Sirichai said. “We blocked the road to get attention from authorities. I did not expect to be arrested for it.”

The blockade was staged after villagers complained that local authorities had for years done nothing to improve safety at the lethal curve.

The blockade dispersed after Governor Maitri acquiesced to the villagers’ demands, which included temporary safety measures installed on the notorious bend in the following days.

However, despite the safety measures, two people were killed at the curve by a truck that slid out of control in the rain just one week later (story here).

Gen Panya showed little compassion for people accused of instigating blockades.

“Blockades cause a great deal of harm to Phuket as a tourist attraction. After the Mak Prok blockade, both Thais and foreigners were afraid of another street protest. A lot of people were in trouble as they were caught in the blockade and could not reach the airport,” he said.

“We cannot let this happen again. Whoever causes problems must be prosecuted.”

— Kritsada Mueanhawong


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forum
🔔 Subscribe to our daily newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Media4 hours ago

No sex please, we’re Thai

Events6 hours ago

An aquatic meal with Olga Belka – taking art to new depths

Transport9 hours ago

Hua Lamphong (Bangkok Train Station) – History and future | VIDEO

Sponsored3 days ago

CBRE recommends top 5 luxury condominiums in Phuket with fantastic locations

Thailand9 hours ago

Bug-eating challenge with Natty, feat. Mark Abbott | VIDEO

Coronavirus (Covid-19)10 hours ago

UPDATE: Israel bans ALL foreign entry over Omicron

Thailand13 hours ago

New variant could dampen Thailand’s reopening enthusiasm

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)14 hours ago

UPDATE: Latest news on Omicron – what we know

Tourism1 day ago

Songkhla prepares for tourism across the Southern land border

Thailand1 day ago

French expat being denied re-entry to Thailand over repeated criticism of the Thai monarchy

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

COVID-19 SATURDAY: 6,073 infections, 32 deaths, provincial data

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Omicron causing concern, Thai authorities ban travellers from 8 countries

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Thailand’s nightlife venues and bars told to keep closed until January 16

Protests1 day ago

Amnesty International under investigation for defending activists

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 days ago

New Covid-19 strain named “Omicron” and a variant of concern

Thailand2 days ago

Entertainment venues will not open before January 16

Thailand3 months ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism9 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism9 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism9 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11