32-year-old Sunathorn Saenphakdi, with criminal connections, gunned down and murdered 41-year-old Suthat Watthana over his suspicions that the older man had a sexual affair with his wife while he was jailed on firearms charges. It came to a head on Tuesday in the Tha Sala district of Nakhon Si Thammarat.

Thai police in Nakhon Si Thammarat staged a crime reenactment of a brutal murder that occurred on Tuesday evening at the roadside in a small village in the Tha Sala district of the province. It involved two local gangsters and was driven by sexual jealousy and revenge. 

Police keep a close eye on 32-year-old Sunathorn Saenphakdi as they staged a crime reenactment on Friday morning in the Tha Sala district of Nakhon Si Thammarat of the brutal murder of 41-year-old Suthat Watthana who died from a single shotgun wound to the chest last Tuesday evening.

Tha Sala police in Nakhon Si Thammarat arrested a 32-year old drug dealer and local gangster on Saturday on foot of warrants issued on Thursday, the 14th of May, for the murder of a 41-year-old criminal associate on the side of the road in the Klai sub-district of Tha Sala district on Tuesday evening last, the 12th of May.

The media were briefed on the murder and police investigation this Friday by Police Lieutenant General Sonthiichai Arvatanakulthep of Nakhon Si Thammarat police station accompanied by Colonel Anan Hrichan of Tha Sala police station just after 11 am.

Genesis of the shooting was sexual jealousy after the older man’s affair with the young man’s wife

The suspected murderer was named by police as Mr Sunathorn Saenphakdi also known as ‘Ong Na Pleng’ and the victim in the murder was Mr Suthat Watthana dubbed as ‘Tann Song’ by many who knew him.

Police explained that the genesis of the shooting was a suspected affair between the wife and sexual partner of Mr Sunathorn and the deceased man in recent times.

Took place while Mr Sunathorn was in prison

This is believed to have taken place while Mr Sunathorn was incarcerated on firearms charges.

On his release from prison, the younger man discovered the affair which shattered his honour and could not let the matter rest without exacting revenge.

Police report that both men have been linked to the criminal underworld including drugs and other matters for some time.

They also report that the two, in the past, have had disagreements over their criminal activities with raised tensions between them.

Called older man to a meeting to clear the air

This week, it is believed that Mr Sunathorn invited the older man to meet him at a place called Na Pleng village. Mr Sunathorn confronted the 41-year-old Mr Suthat about his suspicions regarding his wife.

However, as soon as the older man denied the claims, the young man produced a sawn-off shotgun from inside his jacket at waist level and shot Mr Suthat in the chest. 

The shotgun cartridge, fired at point-blank range, killed the older man on the spot and left him with no less than nine puncture wounds.

Mr Sunathorn was sitting on a blue Honda Wave motorbike when he shot Mr Suthat and quickly drove off from the scene.

Police reenacted the crime on Friday

On Friday, at the scene of the crime, police conducted a reenactment of the murder but kept the man at a distance from close relatives of the victim. Mr Sunathorn’s relations were also present including his 65-year-old mother Phan Saenphakdi.

He told police that on Tuesday evening, he fled to a relative’s house in Surat Thani and while there, buried the murder weapon on a plot of land. 

He later fled back to Nakhon Si Thammarat where he was harboured for two nights at separate locations with different relatives before being apprehended by police at the last location on Thursday night at Noppitita District.

Police have revealed that Mr Sunathorn has made a full confession to the murder and that they are now finalising their case against him for legal prosecution on a charge of premeditated murder.

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