Locals rally against Swiss man

Fehr: Has apologised
Fehr: Has apologised

Phuket residents planned to gather around Yamu Beach in Thalang district on Sunday to rally against a Swiss man who allegedly kicked a local for sitting on steps near his beachfront villa.

On the evening of Feb 24, Urs "David" Fehr, 45, allegedly kicked Thandao Chandam, a doctor at Dibuk Hospital in Phuket, in the back while she and her friend were sitting on steps in front of his villa.

Dr Thandao was also allegedly berated by Khanuengnit, the Swiss man's wife. The doctor later filed a complaint with police over the incident.

In response, the Swiss man and his wife said they thought the doctor and her friend were Chinese tourists who had earlier allegedly trespassed on their property. Mr Fehr apologised for the incident with the doctor, insisting he had no intention to harm her.

However, locals are calling for the expulsion of the Swiss man and for the public beach to be returned to locals. They plan to rally there on Sunday.

The villa steps where the incident took place were not on the couple's property but found to be encroaching on public beach land, locals say.

Tambon Pa Klok municipality's mayor said a further inspection revealed that two more constructions -- wooden stairs and a lounging ground -- also encroached on the beach.

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  • berate: to criticise or speak in an angry way to someone - ด่า,ตำหนิอย่างรุนแรง
  • encroach: to gradually enter, cover or take control of more and more of an area of land or sea - บุกรุก, ล่วงล้ำ
  • expulsion: (the act of) forcing someone, or being forced, to leave a job, school, organisation or country - การขับไล่, การไล่ออก
  • intention: a plan in your mind to do something - ความตั้งใจ เจตนา แผนการ
  • mayor: the most important elected official in a town or city - นายกเทศมนตรี
  • municipality: a town, city or district with its own local government - เทศบาล
  • rally: a large public gathering of people to support someone or to protest against something - การชุมนุม
  • trespass: to go onto someone's land or enter their building without permission - บุกรุก,รุกล้ำ
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