Thailand expels family of suspect

By: Buth Reaksmey Kongkea

Thai authorities on Wednesday sent back six family members of a Cambodian migrant worker accused of raping and murdering a Thai woman in Bangkok last week.

The suspect, 24-year-old construction worker Rith Saroath, fled Thailand, leaving his family behind, after his alleged forcible rape and murder of Ruk Khun Airada, a 25-year-old Thai national on October 21.

Saroath escaped to Cambodia and hid out in his home in Battambang’s Thmar Koul district until he was arrested and sent to Thailand at the Thai authorities’ request.

His expelled relatives, four men and two women, were detained for six days by Thai police and were released in exchange for Saroath, according to police in Battambang’s Kamrieng district.

They were sent to their homes via the Dong International Border Checkpoint in Kamrieng, said Colonel Cheth Vanny, deputy chief of Battambang provincial police.

“The Thai authorities sent them back to their homes to prevent any retaliation from the families of the victim in Thailand,” he said.

The Thai Embassy in Phnom Penh could not be reached for comment.

SOURCE: THE PHNOM PENH POST