Thai suspect arrested in Russian tourists Christmas robbery, rape case


CHACHOENGSAO, Jan 2 —  A Thai suspect has been arrested in connection with the rape, assault and robbery of two female Russian tourists on Christmas Day, December 25, in the tourist district of Pattaya in the nearby province of Chonburi.

Pol Maj-Gen Sanchai Chaiamporn, Deputy Region 2 Police Commissioner, led a raid on a house in Soi Mapyailia 33 in Pattaya’s Banglamung district after receiving information that a vehicle used in the incident was there.

Police found a pickup truck, owned by the woman house owner. It was seized and the owner was asked to Nongprue Police Station where she said the vehicle was taken by her estranged husband, identified as Wichien Jaija, also known as Bungsee, on December 24.

The two Russian tourists confirmed that the vehicle was used on the day they were assaulted.

Police had earlier identified Mr Wichien as one of four suspects wanted in connection with the case following the investigation and questioning a teenaged witness.

The other three suspects include a boy under age 18 who is thought to have acted as a lookout for the other three men as they committed the alleged assault on the Russians in a remote location in Huay Yai.

Police later arrested Mr Wichien the home of another wife in Chachoengsao.

Two more suspects were detained for questioning but no charges yet have been filed against them.

The two Russian tourists reported to police that as they walked back to their hotel in Pattaya, they were forced at gunpoint and threatened with a knife into a pickup truck by three Thai men. The men robbed and raped the women in a forested area in Huay Yai and left them there.