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Seventh arrest made over Phuket “Pla-wan’ stabbing

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Seventh arrest made over Phuket “Pla-wan’ stabbing | The Thaiger
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PHUKET: Phuket Police have arrested another suspect in connection with the assault of Sri panwa resort general manager Vorasit ‘Pla-wan’ Issara and an arrest warrant has been issued for an eighth suspect in the case.

Phuket Provincial Police Commander Chonasit Wattanavrangku yesterday updated the media about progress in the investigation, which must be concluded and forwarded to the court within 30 days.

He identified the seventh suspect as 27-year-old Komsan Ngamwilai, who has been charged with assault. Police are now seeking the eighth suspect, also a member of staff at the Rachada pub.

The other six suspects are being held at Phuket Provincial Court awaiting formal charges.

Forensic evidence and eyewitness accounts would be carefully analyzed to determine what charges would be filed against each of the suspects, Maj Gen Chonasit said.

“We will prepare the case as carefully as possible, in the limited time available under the law, to be fair to both sides,” he said.

Mr Vorasit’s social standing would not have any bearing on the police work, he said.

Mr Vorasit, 30, is the son of construction magnate Songkran Issara, managing director of real estate conglomerate Charn Issara Development PLC.

[For a Thai-language YouTube video of Mr Songkran’s comments about the case made at Bangkok Hospital on Saturday, click here.]

Described as “hi-so” (“high society”) in the Thai media, Mr Vorasit’s friends include Thai and foreign celebrities. Hollywood actor Jeremy Renner, who was with him on the night of the attack, escaped with only minor injuries.

The high-profile investigation will be conducted by a Phuket Provincial Police Deputy Commander, the island’s top-ranking investigator.

He would review the case file personally before forwarding it to the court, Maj Gen Chonasit said.

Rachada pub has been ordered closed for 90 days and the owner has been fined 5,000 baht for trading past the government-mandated closing time on the night of the incident, which took place at about 4:30am.

The latest any nightlife venue can legally operate on the island is 2am.

The fallout from the attack will have an effect on nightlife venues across the island.

“After the fight at Rachada pub I issued official letters to the the superintendents of all eight police stations in Phuket, including Phuket City, Patong and Chalong, ordering them to strictly enforce closing times at nightlife venues in their areas of jurisdiction,” he said.

The closing-time crackdown would have been issued even if the Rachada pub stabbing had not taken place, he stressed.

A new provincial police inspection unit will be making surprise inspections across the island to ensure compliance with the order.

The officers will also search for weapons, make sure there are no guests under 20 years of age on the premises, and that all staff are at least 18 years of age, he said.

— Warisa Temram

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

Phuket

Phuket workshop helps residents cope with high stress brought on by the economic crisis

Caitlin Ashworth

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Phuket workshop helps residents cope with high stress brought on by the economic crisis | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Facebook: ประชาสัมพันธ์ เทศบาลตำบลวิชิต

Hundreds of residents in Phuket’s Wichit subdistrict attended a workshop focused on reducing stress from to the pandemic-induced economic crisis. A psychologist was even on site to help those who had extreme mental stress and a Buddhist monk taught meditation techniques to reduce physiological effects of stress.

The event was planned in response to an online survey conducted by the municipality asking residents about how much stress they were experiencing from the economic climate. They found that some residents had serious stress issues brought on by the pandemic and financial problems, according to Wichit Mayor Kreetha Chotiwichphiphat.

“The loss of income due to the economic crisis brought on by the Covid-19 situation has resulted in some people in the area suffering serious stress, which can lead to serious mental health issues.”

Around 350 people attended the event. The mayor says it was the first step in caring for the residents’ mental health. Local officials plan to hold similar workshops in the future.

“It was a good opportunity for people to realise the importance of mental health and to learn techniques of how to deal with stress, which will help people to maintain their physical health and avoid developing mental health problems.”

SOURCE: Phuket News

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Phuket

Phuket’s Soi Dog Foundation opens Humane Education Centre at Mai Khao shelter

The Thaiger

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Phuket’s Soi Dog Foundation opens Humane Education Centre at Mai Khao shelter | The Thaiger

The Soi Dog Foundation has officially opened its Humane Education Centre, the first of its kind in Thailand dedicated to the welfare of stray animals. The centre, located at the Soi Dog shelter in northern Phuket, forms part of the foundation’s Humane Education program. Rolled out in 2017, the program sees a team visit Thai schools to teach the next generation the basic principles of animal welfare and promote empathetic attitudes towards both owned pets and free-roaming strays.

The program has reached a total of 15,058 students and 861 teachers to date. With a dedicated classroom as well as educational tools and resources now on site at the shelter, Soi Dog will be able to expand the programme and reach an even greater number of young minds.

Co-founder and president of Soi Dog Foundation International John Dalley said, “The cornerstones of what we do – what I believe very firmly are the answers to the stray dog problem throughout Asia – are large-scale sterilisation of stray dogs and cats and education of, particularly, the next generation.

“We see all the time the problems that are being caused through us not respecting the environment and not respecting the other animals with whom we share this planet. That’s why education is so important.”

John also thanked the supporters and donors who made the construction of the centre possible. After cutting the ribbon, the students filed into the brand-new facility for the very first on-site class – a fun and interactive hour of roleplaying, brainstorming and problem solving.

Humane Education Manager Nuttawut “Film” Kumngern. said… “We want to encourage kindness toward animals, especially free-roaming dogs and cats, and teach youngsters to be responsible pet owners. This will sustainably reduce animal cruelty and pet abandonment.”

“We hope to one day see animal welfare incorporated into the curriculum in Thai schools, and our education centre is a great start.”

Soi Dog is ready to welcome school groups from Phuket and other provinces to the centre which can accommodate up to 40 students at any one time. Schools interested in participating are encouraged to email film@soidog.org

Phuket's Soi Dog Foundation opens Humane Education Centre at Mai Khao shelter | News by The ThaigerPhuket's Soi Dog Foundation opens Humane Education Centre at Mai Khao shelter | News by The Thaiger

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International Schools

Police have yet to investigate illegal hiring of foreign teachers at international school in Phuket

The Thaiger

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Police have yet to investigate illegal hiring of foreign teachers at international school in Phuket | The Thaiger

Chalong police in Phuket say they have yet to start investigating the illegal hiring of foreign teachers at an international school in Rawai, south of the island. Palm House International School allegedly hired foreign teachers illegally in which 2 were arrested by Phuket Immigration police on November 4.

Somkiet Sarasin, the leading investigator of the case, says the 2 Brits were informed that police were processing a charge of working illegally in the country against them, in which both denied the charges. Somkiet says the 2 were released on bail, but did not confirm the amount of bail that was set by the police.

“They are still staying in Thailand. I am not worried. I have their passports. I am not available to explain [any details] because the investigation is still ongoing.”

“This is normal for an investigation when the suspects deny the charge against them. I have to check more information against their claims. This case will probably be concluded next month.”

However, the investigation has yet to begin, with Somkiet saying he has not even questioned the owner of the school, despite his claims the case would be finished next month.

“The investigation into the school will take time. The investigation into the two British people must be finished first.”

Such allegations of foreign teachers working illegally have recently been in the news after Sarasas Witaed Sainoi Pitiyakarn School, in the central province of Nonthaburi, saw 7 foreign teachers probed for being hired illegally. That school, along with others in its private network, made nationwide news after CCTV caught a Thai teacher hitting, pushing and dragging a young student in the classroom. Such widespread violence against students has long been a sad component of many Thai schools, in which some of the teachers are unqualified and unlicensed to teach, but are hired anyway.

SOURCE: The Phuket News

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