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12 arrests over Klong Toey student, teacher killings

Twelve suspected members of an organised crime gang were arrested in a police swoop on Monday in connection with the fatal shooting of a student and a woman teacher in Klong Toey area on Nov 11.

Thanasorn Hongsawat, 19, a first-year student of the Rajamangala University of Technology Tawan-ok, Uthenthawai Campus, was shot twice in his chest and once in his neck. He later died at Chulalongkorn Hospital.

Teacher Sirada Sinprasert, 45, of Sacred Heart Convent School, was hit in the head by a stray bullet while withdrawing money from a nearby ATM and later died at MedPark Hospital.

The Nov 11 shooting at first appeared to be a payback, with the teacher as collateral damage, in the feud between students from rival vocational schools. However, a deeper investigation by metropolitan police found out that the shooter and his partner, who drove the motorcycle used in the shooting, were part of a crime syndicate with at least 84 members.

On Nov 22, metropolitian police from divisions 5 and 6 launched a hunt for those suspected to have been involved. Nine were arrested. Police learned of a secretive LINE app room used by the syndicate.

Warrants were subsequently issued for the arrest of the three prime suspects – alleged shooter Anawin Kaewkeb, Abdulloh Dueramae, the motorycle driver, and Noppawut Ruangsri, suspected of being part of the killer’s team – and other suspects.

Police swooped early on Monday, with 200 metropolitan officers armed with arrest warrants from the Bangkok South Criminal Court involved in raids on 14 locations in Bangkok, Nonthaburi and Samut Prakan.

Twelve suspects aged 20-33 years were arrested, including a 24-year-old woman. They were charged with illegal assembly with murderous intent.

During the raids police seized two knives, a handgun, a box of .45 ammunition and 11 T-shirts with the logos of various vocational schools.

The three prime shooting suspects, all in their 20s, remain at large, with “most wanted” notices posted for their arrest. Police believe they are still in Thailand, hiding with assistance from other members of the crime syndicate.

The three [prime suspects in the Nov 11 shooting in Klong Toey area. from left to right – Anawin Kaewkeb, the suspected shooter, Abdulloh Dueramae and Noppawut Ruangsri. (Photo: police)

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