Slain spirit medium's lottery numbers 'too accurate'

Slain spirit medium's lottery numbers 'too accurate'

Police examine the scene near the shrine where spirit medium Chaiyut Phetsri-ngern,  who accurately predicted many winning lottery numbers, was murdered in Nakhon Si Thammarat on Wednesday night. (Photo by Nucharee Rakrun)
Police examine the scene near the shrine where spirit medium Chaiyut Phetsri-ngern, who accurately predicted many winning lottery numbers, was murdered in Nakhon Si Thammarat on Wednesday night. (Photo by Nucharee Rakrun)

A 41-year-old spirit medium with a reputation for accurately predicting winning numbers was gunned down near his shrine in Nakhon Si Thammarat on Wednesday, and police suspect angry underground lottery operators ordered the murder.

Chaiyut Phetsri-ngern was found dead with multiple gunshot wounds at Chaomae Songtham shrine in tambon Khao Ro on Ban Nong Pling-Ban Thung San Road,  said Pol Lt Col Pachon Niam-in,  duty officer at Kapang police station in Thung Song district.  The murder was reported to police around 9.30pm on Wednesday.

Chaiyut, 41, had been hit six times -- in his chest, neck, back and both arms. The killers used a shotgun.

Chaiyut was a former boxer who  fought  under the name ‘’Sam-liem Singmanee’’, his elder brother Chamnarn Phetsri-ngern, 44, told police. He had won many fights at Lumpini and Ratchadamnoen boxing stadiums and later became a boxing champion in the South, winning three title belts.

He then retired and turned to meditation instead.  The former boxer and his relatives built the Chaomae Songtham shrine on some of his land a year ago.

Chaiyut gained popularity as a spirit medium for ‘’God Guan Yu’’, and often gave precise predictions of lottery numbers, his brother said. Residents of several communities regularly visited the shrine to get lottery predictions from the medium.

Chaiyut  had just left his shrine on Wednesday after finishing for the day and was walking off when a group of men arrived in a black car, opened fire at him and then fled.

Pol Lt Col Praphan Decharat, a deputy investigation chief, said the accuracy of Chaiyut's lottery predictions was a possible motive for the murder.

As a medium, he had predicted winning three-digit numbers for both the Oct 1 and Oct 16 draws. Many punters had won money on the underground lottery betting on numbers based on his forecasts. Several underground lottery operators had suffered huge losses as a result. Possibly they had been angry enough to hire gunmen to kill him, Pol Lt Col Praphan said.

Pol Col Somkhid Damkiang, chief of Kapang police station, said police would also look into love affairs and a business conflict as possible motives.

Closed-circuit security camera pictures confirmed at least two assailants were involved, Pol Col Somkhid said.

The police investigation is continuing.



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