WICHIT: A man armed with a pistol robbed a gold shop in broad daylight on Saturday, making off with 705 grams of gold valued at about 470,000 baht.
Pol Lt Somsak Thongklieng, Deputy Inspector with the Royal Thai Police, (Forensic Science Area 44 Office), based at Muang District Police Station, told the Gazette that shopowner Thippawan Limthongnopakhun, 31, and her employee Kanok Joosakul were alone in the store at the time of the robbery.
The site of the hold-up was the BR Gold Shop, at the entrance to the Villa Dawroong housing estate on Chao Fa West Rd.
“A large-framed man, aged about 25-30, wearing a black jacket, olive-green pants and a dark blue full-face motorcycle helmet rode a dark blue Honda motorbike without plates up to the store, parking about 10 meters away. He then went in and robbed the store at gunpoint, telling the staff they would not be harmed if they did what they were told,” Lt Somsak said.
He added that the man quickly snatched 27 gold necklaces from a display cabinet and put them into a shoulder bag.
The heist took just a few minutes, the thief making off with 20 two-bahtweight (30 gram) gold necklaces and seven 1-bahtweight (15g) necklaces.
Police do not have much information to work with in trying to track down the culprit.
“The store’s security camera stopped working a few days before the robbery, so we do not know what he looks like. All we can do is collect evidence and continue with our investigation. We have his fingerprints from the scene and descriptions of the gun and motorbike used,” Lt Somsak said.
“He was experienced. He left the motorbike engine running, committed the crime and rode off within minutes – too fast for police from Wichit [Subdistrict Police Station] to get there in time,” the police officer added.
“The CCTV was broken and the alarm connected directly to the police station was of no help; it happened too fast,” he expalined.
Lt Somask warned other Phuket gold shop owners to take every precaution to protect themselves.
“This hold-up should serve as a good example,” he said.
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