'Punching' Swiss man in Trang rejects bail
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'Punching' Swiss man in Trang rejects bail

Dieter Matthias Straumann is at Muang Trang provincial police station on Tuesday. (Screenshot from Workpoint TV)
Dieter Matthias Straumann is at Muang Trang provincial police station on Tuesday. (Screenshot from Workpoint TV)

TRANG - The Swiss man who assaulted and seriously injured a Thai woman at a shopping mall rejected the bail offered by his former Thai wife and remained uncooperative with police handling the case.

Local tourist police said on Thursday that the Trang Provincial Court had set bail for Dieter Matthias Straumann at 50,000 baht. His ex-wife appeared at the court with an asset worth 50,000 baht to seek his temporary release. 

However, the 62-year-old Swiss rejected the assistance, insisting that he did not want any contact with the Swiss embassy in the country or his relatives. He also insisted that he wanted to remain in jail.

The officers handling the case have requested immigration police to prevent him from leaving Thailand in case he is temporarily released pending prosecution.

It was reported that the suspect declined to answer police interrogators or sign any document acknowledging the charges against him. He faces charges of physical assault causing severe injury and disobedience against officials for failing to cooperate with police interrogators.

Police on Wednesday sought a court order for the first 12-day detention of the man.

According to reports, Mr Straumann repeatedly punched Natchanan Khikkham, 58, at a Big C store in Muang district on Tuesday after shoving her when she told him to be polite. The woman suffered a broken nose and swollen eyes and back and had trouble breathing.

Her son Kritpong Khikkham said the family intends to take all possible legal actions against him.

Mr Kritpong said Mr Straumann pressed his knee on his mother's neck and punched her about 20 times, suggesting that an attempted murder charge should also be considered. His mother would need treatment for four to six weeks, he quoted a doctor as saying.

Interior Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said on Thursday that laws must be strictly enforced in the case because a Thai citizen suffered maltreatment from a visitor.

"We do not want such a person in Thailand because he poses danger to the society, and he already used violence and injured another," Mr Anutin said. "The man stays because he has a visa, and the question of visa revocation must be considered."

It was reported that his retirement visa is set to expire on Nov 14 this year.

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