Dad's the word; canal tragedy; cow in a car; cats rule roost

Dad's the word; canal tragedy; cow in a car; cats rule roost

SOCIAL & LIFESTYLE
Dad's the word; canal tragedy; cow in a car; cats rule roost
The scene at the house following the shooting.

Protective dad goes too far

A Krabi father killed an admirer of his daughter's whom he disliked, with his daughter helping him to cover it up despite having just slept with the victim.

Nuea Klong police in Khok Yang sub-district nabbed Prasert, 57, the ex-head of a municipal council, for shooting to death Ekkapol, or Pol, 38, at his daughter's place on Feb 6.

Ekkapol was staying the night with the daughter, Sukanya, 36, when Prasert turned up unexpectedly, and discovered he was inside.

He called him outside, the two argued briefly, and Prasert shot the visitor in the nape of neck, shoulder, and chest with a .9mm calibre handgun, killing him. Police say the victim was found with a 20cm knife in his hand, which presumably he pulled out to defend himself.

Questioned about the incident, Sukanya initially misled police, saying she saw Ekkapol creeping around outside and called her younger sister for help.

She said she heard gunfire, opened the door and found the intruder dead, without any mention in news reports of who had killed him.

Police, however, say her account conflicted with the facts. A check of CCTV images showed Ekkapol had in fact stayed the night with Sukanya.

News reports say she made up the story to protect her father, who declined to talk to police, saying he would save his testimony for court. She later admitted the killer was her Dad.

Despite Prasert's decision to say nothing to police, news reports quoted him as saying he had warned Ekkapol, who has a history of drug use, to keep away from his daughter. However, he refused to listen, and when he found him at his daughter's home, he took action.

Police charged Prasert with premeditated murder.

Five minutes is all it took

A family dispute contributed to the tragic drowning death of a three-year-old girl in Ayutthaya.

Rescue workers and divers at the pier as they look for the little girl.

The father, Kasem, 48, called police and rescue workers for help after his daughter, Nong Fa Sai, went missing by a canal opposite Chumphon Nikayaram temple.

The little girl disappeared while briefly in the care of her father's adult son, 29, from an earlier marriage.

Kasem had taken the little girl to visit his son at a pavilion next to the canal where he had been sleeping since being ejected from Kasem's home.

The son had been sleeping there after Kasem's wife and the child's mother, Matthana, 28, tossed him out following arguments.

News reports say Kasem and Nong Fa Sai took him some drinking water. However, while he was there Kasem felt the need to relieve himself, so asked his son to look after the little girl.

"When I returned, I asked where Nong Fa Sai had gone, and he said he hadn't seen her," the father told reporters.

He was gone just five minutes, but that was time enough for the little girl to walk off and explore. When Kasem returned he found his son sleeping, oblivious to her plight.

Rescue workers found the girl's shoes floating in the water. After a half-hour search, aided by divers, they found the child's body, about 50m from where she is thought to have disappeared.

Kasem called his wife, Matthana, at work and asked her and some locals to help look for the child.

The parents prayed to the water gods as rescue workers began their search. They asked them to return their daughter safely, but to no avail. Crying and in shock as rescue workers brought Nong Fa Sai's body to shore, they hugged her tiny frame and called out her name in grief.

Kasem's son, meanwhile, took advantage of the drama to flee the scene, as he was worried that Matthana's relatives would harm when they discovered his negligence contributed to the toddler's death.

The young man, unnamed in news reports, had been staying with his father after losing his job at a factory. However, the son and Matthana, who are just a year apart, argued often, and he moved out to sleep at the pavilion instead.

Matthana, the mother, showed little sympathy for her husband, saying she had never left the child alone with anyone, even briefly.

Police found no signs of struggle, but sent the body for an autopsy. They were also looking for the son, as he was the last person to see the little girl alive.

Back seat surprise

The cow stuffed in the back of the car.

Police in Narathiwat have nabbed a man for cattle theft after he stuffed a farmer's cow into his Honda sedan and tried to make off with it.

Mustakeem, 28, admitted taking the pregnant cow after he found it standing in the middle of the road.

"I edged forward in my car but it refused to move, so I put it in the back," he told police later. He dragged it into the rear of his car with the aid of a rope around its neck.

While the cow initially put up little resistance, it started to panic once the car started moving. The car lost its balance and overturned, forcing Mustakeem into a roadside ditch.

When Su-ngai Padi police arrived they found the cow's head sticking out the broken back window, as if offering a greeting. Shortly after it managed to escape from the vehicle, news reports said, and joined a nearby herd before its owner finally retrieved the animal.

Mustakeem, who admits he was drunk, says he has worked as a builder in Malaysia, where traders often move goods in the back of their cars.

"They take out the back seat, just as I did in my Honda. I use it to transport clothes which I sell from home," he said, explaining how the idea came to him of stuffing the cow in his car.

Denying he had stolen the animal, he said his father-in-law, who raises cattle, had asked him to look after it.

Mustakeem even persuaded his wife to repeat that claim to police, though when they contacted Mustakeem's father-in-law, Pa-uri Je-ma, he denied having said any such thing.

Meanwhile, the real owner of the animal, Klai Puiruk, complained to police about his missing cow, saying it was among 15 cattle he owned.

He had taken them to graze by an oil palm plantation, about 1km from his home, when the cow went missing. Later he heard about a motorist with a cow in the back who had fallen in a nearby ditch. After retrieving it, he complained to police.

Officers, who have tested Mustakeem for drugs and are awaiting the results, have charged him initially with cattle theft.

Drugs help pay cat care bills

Sa-at 'Lung Piak' Cherdchit busted for drugs.

A Samut Prakan man invested his pension and proceeds from illicit drug sales into raising a horde of cats.

Phra Samut Chedi police nabbed Sa-at "Lung Piak" Cherdchit, 62, after finding him selling ya ba and ice at his home. They had heard he was supplying drugs to the locals. Indeed, while paying a visit, one of his customers called.

Police asked Lung Piak to put him on speaker phone. Lung Piak claimed he was having an asthma attack, felt faint and vomited, which news reports said was intended as a signal to his caller that the police had arrived.

"The old man vomited several times, and the caller hung up," one report said.

Police searched his house and found 147 speed pills secreted in a wall, and 0.5 grammes of ice in a pole holding up his house. During their search, they also found many cats running about the place.

Lung Piak said he was a handyman in the village, and also drew a state pension, but was finding it tough making ends meet. He admitted he had gone back to selling drugs, after serving six years following a 1999 conviction for selling heroin, to help pay the bills.

"I invest my pension and pay as a handyman in drugs, which I buy from a guy who lives behind Sa Kla temple," he said.

He ordered 200 pills at a time for 2,700 baht, which he would sell for 30 baht each. He had been in the drug trade for just a month when he was caught, he said.

"I put the money into food and meds for the cats. My younger sister used to raise them but they kept getting pregnant. She ran out of time to look after them all so I took on the burden. I now have 26 animals," he said.

Police once again charged Lung Piak with possessing drugs with intent to supply.

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