PATONG: After handing themselves in to Kathu Police on Monday, two Thai men are being held at Phuket Provincial Prison on charges of “causing death during an affray” of a Vietnamese woman whose body was discovered lying in a klong last week.
Kathu Police Superintendent Col Grissak Songmoonnak told the Gazette that the men allegedly confessed to killing 37-year-old Tran Thi Mung, also known as “Nina Nhong”, during a botched robbery. However, they later retracted their confessions.
Following a report by an anonymous caller at about 10.30 pm on April 18, police found Mrs Nhong’s body in the shallow klong, just 200 meters north of the Patong Municipality offices on Ratchapratannusorn Rd.
The site is also about 700 meters from where murdered Danish tourist Henrik Rasmussen’s body was found, in the same klong, on February 7.
Col Grissak said that police arrived to find Ms Nhong’s body in the shallow canal in front of Cozy Guesthouse, where she worked as a maid. Her husband, 42-year-old Vietnamese Lequang Duy, also known as “Reger Nhong”, was at the scene, he added.
Mr Nhong told police he was at work at a shop on Thaweewong Rd when he received a call from a Vietnamese friend who said that his wife had fallen into the canal, possibly because she was drunk, Col Grissak said.
Mr Nhong also told police that a friend of his wife had repaid to her a 30,000-baht loan earlier that day. She kept the money with her all day, but it was missing after her body was discovered, he added.
Ms Nhong sustained injuries to her neck and face, possibly caused by a blunt object. A gold necklace was still on her body, said Col Grissak.
Kathu Police Inspector Pol Lt Padungpong Duksukaew today told the Gazette, “The men have now denied the charges, but they were found in possession of three mobile phones belonging to the victim.”
Although the men allegedly presented the phones to police, they have not been charged with robbery.
Lt Col Nitikorn Rawang, who is leading the investigation into the death, said police have thus far been unable to trace the 30,000 baht reported missing by the victim’s husband.
Col Nitikorn declined to name the two men.
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