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Police arrest suspect for murder of Phuket teen

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PHUKET: A suspect arrested last night has confessed to strangling Phuket teenager Sunisa “Som” Saiyoy, 17, in her Chalong home on Tuesday, but denies charges that he raped her.

The suspect, 28-year-old Kittikhun Wonghajak, was arrested by the Phuket Provincial Police investigation team early this morning and was presented to the press briefly at 10am at provincial police headquarters.

A press conference is scheduled for this afternoon.

Mr Kittikhun, a native of Nakhon Phanom, was wanted on eight previous warrants in theft-related cases, four in the Phuket City Police District and four more in Chalong, said Col Wanchai Palawan of the Phuket Provincial Police.

Kittikhun confessed to breaking and entering the home of Ms Sunisa and killing her, but has thus far denied charges that he attempted to rape the teenager.

Phuket Provincial Police Commander Chonasit Wattanavrangkul told the Gazette this morning:

“After the crime, I ordered both the Phuket Provincial Police investigation unit, as well Chalong Police, to investigate and arrest the suspect. We focused on [suspected or known] thieves in Phuket, as well as local residents known to have disappeared after the murder,” said Maj Gen Chonasit.

“Last night, the suspect was arrested in Chalong by our investigation team. The suspect is a known criminal who has burglarized homes in many different areas.”

After the suspect initially denied any involvement, police searched his home and uncovered “useful evidence”, including property from Sunisa’s house, Maj Gen Chonasit said.

Meanwhile, family and friends began bathing rites for the late Sunisa at Wat Lakthiwanaram (Wat Tai) in Chalong yesterday. The cremation is scheduled for Saturday.

— Krisada Meuanhawong

 

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