Thai woman sought for ‘masterminding’ Taiwanese man’s slaying

Thai woman sought for ‘masterminding’ Taiwanese man’s slaying

Cameroon and Myanmar nationals in custody, Vanuatu suspect believed to have fled country

A police officer takes one of two suspects arrested in connection with the murder of a Taiwanese man to an interrogation room at Bang Na police station on Friday. (Capture from PPTV)
A police officer takes one of two suspects arrested in connection with the murder of a Taiwanese man to an interrogation room at Bang Na police station on Friday. (Capture from PPTV)

Police are seeking an arrest warrant for a Thai woman said to have masterminded the murder of a Taiwanese man in Bangkok, and are seeking help from Interpol to arrest another suspect from Vanuatu who reportedly fled the country.

The move follows the arrest late Thursday of two men from Cameroon and Myanmar.

Investigators from Bang Na police station on Saturday took the two suspects — Zwe Lin Pyae, 21, of Myanmar and John Agbor, 40, of Cameroon — to the Phra Khanong Criminal Court for approval to detain them for 12 days while they continue their investigation. The officers opposed bail, citing the seriousness of the crime.

Under the law, suspects can be detained for seven 12-day periods, or 84 days in total, before police must press charges or release them.

The two men were arrested on Srinakarin Road in Bangkok late Thursday night on suspicion of murdering the Taiwanese man at a hotel in Bang Na district.

They were charged with the premeditated murder of Chu Chiang Shen, 48, whose body was found in a room on the sixth floor of the Niran Grand Hotel on Udomsuk Soi 17 off Sukhumvit 103 (Udomsuk) Road, on Thursday morning. Hotel staff found the body after the victim’s friend reported that he could not be contacted by phone.

Pol Maj Gen Theeradet Thamsuthee, investigative chief of the Metropolitan Police Bureau (MPB), said that the suspects, along with another unidentified European man who remains at large, targeted the victim’s wealth based on information from a Thai woman who ordered the attack, claiming the victim was rich.

Police submitted evidence to the Phra Khanong Criminal Court on Friday to back their case for a warrant to arrest the Thai woman.

As for the fourth suspect, police said he held Vanuatu citizenship and had reportedly fled Thailand. Police are coordinating with Interpol to seek his arrest.

Meanwhile, the wife of Mr Agbor, the Cameroonian suspect, insisted her husband was not involved in the slaying.

The woman, whose name was not released, told police that her husband had known the victim for a long time. Whenever the Taiwanese man arrived in Thailand, he and Mr Agbor often met for meals. She said the victim had introduced her husband to the Vanuatu national.

During questioning, the Cameroonian woman told police that the Taiwanese man had cheated the Vanuatan out of money, and the latter asked her husband to mediate in talks. On the day the crime took place, the Vanuatan contacted Mr Agbor to meet him at the hotel in Bang Na. After opening a room on the fifth floor of the hotel, Mr Agbor left.

Mr Agbor later phoned the Vanuatan to ask him whether he had succeeded in getting his money back, but he reportedly heard loud noises during the phone conversation. He then returned to the hotel and found the Vanuatan and Myanmar suspects pepper-spraying the victim’s face, according to the woman.

Mr Agbor reportedly intervened by shielding the victim with his hands, but the man from Myanmar implicated him in the murder, the woman told police.

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