Last Wednesdays 53-year-old Norwegian man Roger Bullman from Oslo told Phuket Tourist police that the UK man had barged into his room with a knife stabbing him on the left shoulder.
A contradictory account of the killing of 34-year-old UK man Amitpal Singh Bajaj in Phuket last Wednesday at an upmarket hotel has emerged. The deceased man’s wife in a statement released through the Sikh Press Association contradicts the earlier version of events given to tourist police by the accused Norwegian man in the case, Roger Bullman.
In it, she says that the Norwegian who killed her husband in the early hours of Wednesday morning had broken into the 5-star hotel bedroom she was sharing with her husband and their infant son. Her version of the story appears to be supported by local police in Koran Beach, Phuket who first responded to the incident.
The British media on Sunday was reporting the different version of events in relation to the tragic killing of UK man Amitpal Singh Bajaj from London who died on Wednesday morning in a confrontation with a fellow guest at an exclusive hotel resort in Phuket. The hotel has now been named as the 5-star Centara Grand Hotel on Karon Bay.
Statement through the Sikh Press Association
The source of the new version of events is the Sikh Press Association and the key witness being quoted is the UK man’s 34-year-old wife Bandhna Kaur Bajaj. She is quoted as saying that the incident started when the Norwegian man, their hotel neighbour broke into the UK couple’s room which was also occupied by their infant baby boy. Ms Bajaj says that the Norwegian ‘barged in’ through the balcony door separating a shared balcony area between the two apartments at the hotel.
Norwegian claim conflicts with evidence of UK man’s wife and Karon police reports
On Thursday, the Thai Examiner quoting the local newspaper in Phuket, The Phuket News, reported that the lethal incident that led to the death of Mr Bajaj occurred after he confronted the Norwegian man in his room with a steak knife and launched an attack on Roger Bullman from Oslo which left him wounded in the left shoulder.
It has now emerged that the struggle between the two men occurred in the balcony area between the two rooms. Thai police have confirmed from their investigations that 53-year-old Roger Bullman did indeed break down the barrier between the two rooms and entered Mr Bajaj’s room. It also been confirmed that initial reports from the scene of the struggle suggest that Mr Bullman did have a wound on his left shoulder.
UK man found barely alive in a weak condition
This is according to a report filed by Major Techin Deethongon of the Thai police in Karon who said: ‘There we found Mr Roger Bullman, 53 years old, with a cut wound from a sharp object on his left shoulder and he had bruises on the left side of his face.’
The report also states the 34-year old UK man was found lying face down and had weak breathing. He was bleeding from his nose and mouth. A security guard at the hotel had arrived on the scene and found the Norwegian man lying on top of the UK man and throttling him.
Emergency services remove the injured UK man to hospital but he was confirmed dead there shortly afterwards. This is also reported to be where Mr Bajaj’s wife first learned that her husband had passed away.
On Wednesday, Thai Tourist Police confirmed bail for the Norwegian at ฿200,000 but Karon police say they had opposed bail when he was sent to court
On Wednesday, Major Ekkachai Siri of the Thai Tourist Police in Karon gave the Norwegian’s account of the incident and confirmed that he had been charged with causing the death of another person. It was reported then that he had been granted bail of ฿200,00 before the Phuket Provincial Court.
However, now it appears that local police in Karon opposed bail for the Norwegian man accused in the killing. Colonel Prawit Sutthirueangarun who is the Chief of Police in Karon, said that they handed over the arrested man to the Provincial Court holding cells. ‘I don’t know where he is now after I handed him over to the holding cells at Phuket Provincial Court.’ he was quoted as saying. ‘We sent our request to the court for Mr Bullman be denied release on bail.’
Significantly, the Norwegian is also now accused of violent trespass which is a very serious offence in Thailand particularly if committed at night. This was also confirmed by Major Techin of Karon Police. The Norwegian, as previously reported, is also charged with causing the death of the UK man which could see him facing 3 to 15 years in prison if found guilty.
Evidence of victim’s wife to investigating local police directly conflicts with Norwegian’s account
Major Techin of Karon police also quotes the victim’s wife as saying that her husband and the Norwegian were fighting over the noise from the Norwegian’s room. She says that the Norwegian then came into their room. Her husband told her and the young child to flee the room as the two men began to grapple with each other. Police reports suggest that the struggle between the two men may have involved the use of a bottle as a weapon.
UK media coverage quote wife as the main witness to the Phuket hotel attack in which her husband died
The UK press reports include coverage by The Guardian and the BBC with the UK man’s wife quoted as the main witness to the tragic incident. Bandhna Kaur Bajaj said in the statement released through the Sikh Press Association said: ‘My husband sacrificed his life to save my son’s life and mine. He will always be our hero.’
She said that the Norwegian man, 53-year-old Roger Bullman from Oslo had ‘barged in through the balcony door.’ The UK woman describes hiding with her son under a tree near a spa area of the hotel.
UK man was a respected figure in the Sikh community in Southall, London shocked at his untimely death
In the aftermath of the killing, there have been extensive tributes to the UK man from the Sikh community in Southall in London where he was an active and respected member of the community. The General Secretary of the Sikh temple in the area said that the community was ‘shocked and saddened’ to hear the news of his death while protecting his family in Thailand. ‘He was well-known, admired and respected in the community for his Seva, voluntary work. We pray to the Almighty to give his friends and family the strength to get through these difficult times and to obtain justice,’
The Sikh community in London is to hold a memorial service for Amitpal Singh Bajaj on Sunday
The UK Foreign Office and the UK Embassy in Thailand is reported to be offering assistance to the UK man’s family while Norwegian authorities have confirmed that consular assistance is being offered to Mr Bullman, the accused man.