Tuk tuk driver cleared of tourist bag theft

Tuk tuk driver cleared of tourist bag theft

A screenshot taken from a video filmed by Hong Kong tourist Lau Sai Wei. A hand gesture by the tuk tuk driver just before Mr Lau's bag was snatched made him suspect the theft was coordinated.
A screenshot taken from a video filmed by Hong Kong tourist Lau Sai Wei. A hand gesture by the tuk tuk driver just before Mr Lau's bag was snatched made him suspect the theft was coordinated.

Police have arrested a young pillion rider after a bag was snatched from a Hong Kong tourist travelling in a tuk tuk, and confirmed the tuk tuk driver was not an accomplice, an accusation raised by the tourist.

Anucha Rod-udom, 18, was taken to a news briefing at Phaya Thai Police Station at 4pm, just hours after police apprehended him in Nimit Mai Soi 22 in Klong Sam Wa district, Bangkok.

Mr Anucha admitted to being the man caught in a video clip riding pillion on a motorcycle and snatching a bag from Lau Sai Wei who was in a tuk tuk travelling along Phetchaburi Road in the Ratchathewi area. His accomplice driving the motorcycle, named only as M, is still at large. 

Metropolitan Police Bureau acting commander Sanit Mahathaworn said the suspect made off with 13,000 baht, 1,000 Singapore dollars, and Mr Lau’s passport. He brushed aside Mr Lau’s suspicion that the tuk tuk driver may have involved with the thieves who stole his bag.

“Based on the investigation, the tuk tuk driver is not involved," Pol Lt Gen Sanit said. 

The tourist posted a video online, suggesting the tuk tuk driver may have helped the robbers as he appeared to make a hand signal seconds before the bag was snatched.   

Pol Lt Gen Sanit said officials checked the motorbike's licence plate caught in the video and found it belonged to a woman named Kae Tuaytong who had lent her motorcycle to Mr Anucha who is her son-in-law. 

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