KAMPHAENG PHET: The breakthrough for police was in tracking down where the couple had stayed in Pattaya and the location for the assault on the pair. They then identified a taxi driver who was hired by four men with five suitcases, two of which contained the bound bodies of the victims still alive before meeting their macabre end.
Thai police announced the arrest of four callous killers from China on Saturday who were tracked down after they dumped 30-year-old Chinese man Wang Jun alive and bound at his feet with wire while bent over into small suitcase into the Ping River in Kamphaengphet on Monday night. He was kidnapped along with his wife 28-year-old wife Zhu Bing whose body has not yet been found but is believed by Thai police to have been subjected to the same inhuman and brutal death.
Thai police have tracked down and arrested four Chinese thugs who are believed to have cruelly murdered two of their compatriots on the night of the 24th February last by placing the bodies of a husband and wife, bent over, in to separate suitcases and dropping them into the Ping River in Kamphaeng Phet in central Thailand not far from the border with Myanmar.
One black suitcase was found by a fisherman on Tuesday afternoon floating on the river.
Suthon Thapthan knew there was something amiss from the pong emanating from the travel bag which he said smelt like rotten fish.
Thai fisherman on the Ping River was the first witness to the grisly end of 30-year-old Wang Jun
‘But when I opened it, there was a man curled up inside and I was frightened,’ he told police. The body in the case was that of 30-year-old Chinese man Wang Jun who immigration police knew was a regular visitor to Thailand entering the kingdom through the land border with Myanmar near Mae Sot in Tak province in western Thailand.
An autopsy on Mr Jun’s body showed that he died an atrocious death caused by drowning when the bag was dropped into the river from a vehicle hired by his murderers on Monday night.
Police still searching for Chinese man’s wife
Police are still looking for the body of 28-year-old Zhu Bing, the wife of the murdered man, who they strongly suspect met a similar end based on witness statements and evidence from the initial crime scene in Pattaya.
On Tuesday, police reports indicated that they were making rapid progress with the case. Police Colonel Jittipol Polponprueksa even told reporters that they were seeking arrest warrants at that point while also searching for the second case and body.
‘The victim arrived with his wife and she is missing. We are searching the river for her body, which we believe is also in a suitcase,’ the police officer disclosed to reporters.
Police breakthrough in locating the taxi driver
This came after police located the driver of a vehicle reported to be a taxi who was hired by the killers in Pattaya. Police had earlier identified the property where the attack on the couple took place by checking the Chinese man’s movements.
‘I was contacted through the car company to drive for a group of Chinese tourists,’ he said. ‘When I arrived at the house, there were four Chinese people who started loading five suitcases onto the car and I noticed two of them were heavier than the rest.’
Locals in Kamphaeng Phet heard the suitcases being noisily dumped in the river on Monday night
Police in Kamphaeng Phet interviewed locals in the area who said they heard noises on Monday night and two heavy objects being dropped into the river.
The driver told police that the men had asked him to stop on three occasions when they dumped four suitcases into the river at different points near the river in Kamphaeng Phet.
Chinese men face the death penalty for premeditated murder and kidnapping of the couple in Pattaya
On Saturday, Royal Thai Police deputy spokesman General Krisana Pattanacharoen told reporters that the four Chinese men arrested had been charged with kidnapping, premeditated murder and detaining another against their will causing death.
They were also charged with the ancillary crime of disposing of a body.
The policeman said that if convicted the man are facing 20 years in prison or the distinct possibility of the death penalty.
‘The body of Wang Jun, aged 30, was found doubled over in a black suitcase floating in Ping River on Tuesday this week with the ankles tied with plastic cables,’ General Krisana said. ‘Police divers are still searching for Zhu Bing, 28, his wife, who has been missing and they believe she might have been murdered in the same fashion.’
General Krisana confirmed that all four arrested and charged were Chinese nationals and that police had contacted the Chinese Embassy so that relatives of the couple can be informed
The couple were among a party of 15 who arrived in Pattaya on February 12th for a holiday
Police have revealed that 15 Chinese nationals in all arrived in Thailand on February 12th and stayed in several properties in Pattaya including a large villa in the city.
Most of the group returned to China on February 14th leaving the couple alone for an extended holiday.
Police identified the villa where the couple were assaulted by the attackers and marked for death
Police identified one of the properties this week as the possible area where the attack took place sometime after Valentine’s day and Monday the 24th February when the taxi driver was hired to transport the men and five suitcases to Tak province from the Pattaya villa.
Police have found bloodstains and indications of a struggle at the property and later received fingerprints and other evidence linked with the case.
Cold-blooded killers from China
Police are still investigating and motive for the murders and the circumstances.
However, it would appear, from the cruel and heinous method used by the Chinese men to dispatch their victims, that these men are cold-blooded killers who have killed before.