Pattaya Provincial Court Judge Kasichol Wongwaichol handed down the sentences for Vichen Jaija, 36, Thongchai Jandee, 21, and Anuwat Wat-Onn, 33, Nov. 20.
Vichen, who had been wanted on unrelated murder charges in Kamphaeng Phet, was sentenced to 41 years. Anuwat, who worked in Pattaya’s much-maligned jet-ski rental industry, received 46 ½ years and Thongchai was sentenced to 21 ½ years. All will serve out their time at Chonburi prison.
Chief Justice Apichart Thepnu noted that the case had been publicized around the globe, doing tremendous damage to Pattaya’s tourism industry.
The three men were arrested a week after they used a handgun and knife to abduct the two 30s-age Russians from Pratamnak Soi 2 early Dec. 26 and transport them to a shack near the Channok Reservoir where they were sexually assaulted.
Vichen and Thongchai confessed they had hauled the women from the truck and raped them while Anuwat stood watch.
Anuwat, who said this was his first offense, claimed Vichen and Thongchai appeared at his house on Thepprasit Soi 5 with drugs, then suggested they cruise Pattaya. After spotting the Russians, who were on the way back to their hotel after a night partying on Walking Street, Anuwat said the initial plan was only to rob the pair. However, he said, Vichen insisted on raping them.