15 July 2024

A man, who allegedly killed a hailing app driver, stole his car and used it to escape after robbing a gold shop in downtown Chiang Mai on Monday, has been arrested.

About 37.8 troy ounces (80 baht weight) of gold ornaments, worth about 3.2 million baht, were allegedly stolen from the gold shop by the 26-year-old lone suspect, identified only as “Nitiphon”.

According to Pol Lt-Gen Thaphon Yeesakorn, commissioner of 5th Region Provincial Police Bureau, Nitiphon told the police during questioning that his family has financial problems, so he decided to rob a gold shop.

He hatched the plan about six months ago and began to execute it at about 4am yesterday, when he parked his own car at the Karlae restaurant on the Suthep Road. He then took a two-kilometre walk along a trail up the Doi Suthep mountain.

The suspect then stopped on the roadside and hailed a Grab ride to pick him up. When the Grab car arrived, driven by Suthep Channantha, he sat in the back seat and used his Glock handgun to shoot the driver in the back of his neck, killing him instantly.

The suspect then disposed of the victim’s body in the bushes and drove the stolen car to the downtown area to rob the gold shop when it opened at about 10am.

He then headed to the Karlae restaurant to pick up his own car and drove to five other shops to sell the stolen gold.

Three gold shops refused to accept the gold, after they heard about the robbery, but two, in Doi Saked and San Kamphaeng districts, purchased about 4.7 troy ounces (10 baht weight) of the gold from him prior to his arrest.