6 June 2024

The driver of a passenger van who allegedly broke the traffic light and crushed to death a long-distance Filipino cyclist in the eastern province of Chachoengsao  during the early hours of Tuesday will face heavy charges, police said.

The driver, 29-year old Mr Chutipan Muktawiang, was arrested by police on Thursday with the help of footages of CCTV at the scene of the fatal accident at a traffic light on Chachoengsao-Bang Pakong road in Ban Po district and nearby areas.

The Filipino victim, Russel Perez, was among a group of cyclists participating in a long-distance cycling in Chachoengsao province on October 23.

Pol Maj-Gen Thirapol Chindaluang, Chachoengsao provincial police commander, said the van driver did not stop his vehicle to help the victim but sped away from the scene after the road accident.

But Chutipan claimed he did not see the cyclist because it was dark.  After the accident, he sped off to Rong Klua market in Aranyaprathet districting bordering Poipet township of Cambodia.

Later on, he returned to Min Buri, outside Bangkok and informed his boss to claim compensation from insurance company for damage to the van which he claimed was caused by a collision with a cow.

Pol Maj-Gen Thiraphol said police checked with the traffic light at the scene of the accident and found out that Chutipan jumped the traffic light before he crashed into the Filipino cyclist, crushing him to death.

He said the van driver would face charges of reckless driving, causing death to other people and not stopping to help the victim or to report the incident to the police and drug abuse after urine test showed positive of drug use.