A pathological woman killer who stole money from his victims as well as their lives. In its judgment in the case, the Khon Kaen Provincial Court certified that Mr Somkid Pumpuang was a remorseless and cruel killer who posed a grave threat to the public if ever released again from prison as it sentenced him, on March 17th, to death without granting mercy.
A Thai court in March sentenced a serial killer who was originally sentenced to be executed in 2005 for the murder of 5 women in hotels across a similar number of provinces to death for the second time after the torture and rape of a 51-year-old hotel maid at her home in Khon Kaen on December 15th 2019, just seven months after he was granted parole and released from prison.
News emerged over the weekend that a Thai serial killer, originally sentenced to death in 2005 for the murder of five women but who managed to be released on parole in May 2019, was formally sentenced to death again by the Provincial Court in Khon Kaen on March 17th last for the murder of another woman, 51-year-old Ratsami Mulichan at her home in Khon Kaen on the 15th December 2019.
Police believe that there was a strong sexual element in the perverse and cruel murders committed by the man
Case caused shock and public outcry in Thailand at the end of 2019 and the beginning of last year
There was both shock and a furore after the arrest of 55-year-old Somkid Pumpuang on a Bangkok bound train from Surin on December 18th 2019 by police at Pak Chong Railway Station where he was identified by a witness.
His case caused a public outcry in Thailand at the time with demands for the death penalty to be brought back into more regular and frequent use.
MP proposed that rapists should be castrated
It also drew a proposal from Samut Songkhram MP, Rangsima Rodrasmi, that convicted rapists in Thailand in certain circumstances, be subject to chemical castration orders.
The proposal which came before a committee of the House of Representatives, weeks after the murder, even received qualified support from Minister of Justice Somsak Thepsutin, at the time.
Khon Kaen Provincial Court sentenced the killer to death for the second time for another heinous crime
On March 17th last, the Khon Kaen court sentenced Mr Somkid to death after finding him guilty of the premeditated murder of the woman.
It imposed on him a three-year term for theft from the victim and a third sentence of one year and four months for concealment of her body.
Evidence read out in court showed that Ms Ratsami had died from suffocation.
Her body was found wrapped in a blanket and was naked from the waist down.
Her wrists and ankles had been bound while an electrical wire had been fastened around her neck and held with adhesive tape.
Media dubbed him as Thailand’s ‘Jack the Ripper’ in a country where sexual serial killers are rare
Thai media had dubbed the killer as Thailand’s ‘Jack the Ripper’ in a country where such killers are, according to informed police sources, seldom found despite the country’s high homicide rate and chronic problem with violence against women.
The same source suggests that the pathological serial killer undoubtedly had left behind as yet unknown victims.
In its judgment in March, the court noted that the convicted man had committed similar crimes on at least five previous occasions.
It also confirmed that the man showed absolutely no remorse for his crime and was a danger to the public if ever released again.
Trang native first sentenced to death in 2005 for the murder of 5 women linked with the nightlife and sex industry at hotels in different provinces
In 2005, Somkid, originally from Trang province in southern Thailand, was sentenced to death when he was convicted of the murder of 5 women believed to have been nightclub workers, masseuses and sex workers at various hotels in Trang, Lampang, Buri Ram, Mukdahan and Udon Thani.
The serial killer had a pattern of stealing money from his victims as well as raping and torturing them.
Death sentence commuted to life leading to the ‘model prisoner’ being granted parole in May 2019
In 2005, his sentence was commuted by the court from death to life imprisonment and thereafter he was described by the Corrections Department as a ‘model prisoner’ who benefitted from a range of sentence reductions and amnesties until he was finally granted parole on the 17th May 2019.
This was less than fifteen years after being sentenced to death and followed a decision by the prison service parole board.
Moved in to live with his sixth victim on December 5th 2019, Somkid murdered her after 10 days
On December 5th, locals in the Kranuan district of Khon Kaen observed that Mr Sompong appeared to have moved in with Ms Ratsami who worked as a hotel maid locally.
He murdered the woman at her home on December 15th and fled the scene until he was captured by police three days later on the train.
Following his arrest, the killer, confronted by overwhelming evidence, confessed to police that he had committed the murder but then rescinded his confession in subsequent court pleadings.
This was one of the reasons for the court finding on March 17th that there was no basis whatsoever to grant mercy to the serial killer whose death sentence was confirmed.