Thailand seeks extradition of S. Korean suspect in Pattaya murder

Bangkok/Seoul, May 15 (IANS) Thailand plans to request South Korea hand over a suspect in the murder of a South Korean tourist and disposal of the body in Pattaya, a local media report said on Wednesday.

Thai authorities are seeking the extradition of one of the three suspects, who was arrested in a provincial county in South Korea on Monday, the Khaosod daily reported quoting a local police official.

Thai police are investigating the brutal murder case, in which the body of the 34-year-old victim was found in a plastic container filled with cement in a reservoir in Pattaya, reports Yonhap News Agency.

A Bangkok court has also issued arrest warrants for the three suspects on charges of abduction and murder, the news outlet said.

An official from the South Korean Embassy in Thailand said it has received no formal request on the extradition.

“Thai police officials have mentioned the possibility of seeking an extradition but we have received no such request yet,” the embassy official said.

“We are in the process of confirming the arrest warrants,” the official said.

South Korean police arrested the suspect in his 20s in Jeongeup, some 217 kilometers southwest of Seoul, on Sunday, and transferred him to Changwon in accordance with jurisdiction rules.

On Wednesday, a regional court in Changwon issued an arrest warrant to keep him under further custody for investigation, citing a flight risk and concerns of destroying evidence although the suspect denied having been directly involved in the murder.

The second suspect, also in his 20s, was caught and arrested in Cambodia on Tuesday, with the police tracking down the last suspect, who is believed to have fled to a neighboring country from Thailand.

Police were also looking into possible motives of the crime, including involvement of illegal drugs or gambling.



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