PHUKET : Police have arrested three more suspects in connection with Tuesday night's attack on a member of the royal guard of the visiting crown prince of Kedah state of Malaysia in a Phuket hotel room.
Provincial Police Region 8 deputy chief Pol Maj Gen Wisanu Muangpraesee said yesterday that of the total of five suspects now in custody, two are Malaysian nationals and the other three are Thai.
The Malaysians were named as Hing Yan Siong and Teh Lai Chay, and the Thais as Thanyaporn Toe-int, Sakhon Lisopha and Prakong Lisopha.
Mr Sakhon and Mr Prakong are brothers and come from Songkhla province. They were arrested on Thursday.
Pol Maj Gen Wisanu said national police chief Adul Saengsingkaew instructed Provincial Police Region 8 to expedite the investigation as the case is sensitive. Two more suspects remain at large and are believed to be hiding in Malaysia, he said.
Somjai Sawad, wife of Hing Yan Siong and owner of a car driven by the suspects, told police her husband's friend asked to borrow the car but she did not know what it would be used for.
Sukanya Leesopha, Mr Sakhon's wife, told police that Mr Prakong asked her husband to travel with him to the Millennium Resort Patong Hotel in Phuket.
After arriving at the hotel, Mr Prakong and his brother met a Malaysian who offered to pay them 10,000 baht to do a job. They were paid 5,000 baht upfront.
Ms Sukanya said the two then received a key card for room 1627. When the pair entered the room, they saw two Malaysian men already waiting inside. They concealed their faces, but her husband recognised their voices, she added.
Moments later, a member of the royal guard of Crown Prince Tunku Annuar Sultan Badlishah entered the room, and the Malaysian men started hitting him, she said. The woman said her husband and his brother were just standing in the room and did not attack the guard.
The guard was able to break loose from his attackers and fled.
The Malaysian men then paid another 5,000 baht to the brothers and told them that their job was done, she said.
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- Writer: Achadtaya Chuenniran