Thailand’s most wanted fugitive to return after arrest in Indonesia

Thailand’s most wanted fugitive to return after arrest in Indonesia

A highly sought criminal from Thailand has been arrested in Indonesia after more than seven months in hiding.

Authorities traced the whereabouts of Chaowalit Thongduang, who was using a fake identity, when he got arrested in the resort island of Bali last week for assaulting his Indonesian girlfriend.

Chaowalit escaped from a hospital in the Thai city of Nakhon Si Thammarat while under police custody on October 22nd last year.

The Thai fugitive was involved in a shootout with the police in November after authorities learned he was hiding in a village but failed to capture him.

The 37-year-old entered Indonesia using alias Sulaiman in December 2023 after a 17-hour journey by a speed boat.

Police seized several pieces of evidence including a fake identity card and birth certificate as well as an Indonesian bank account book.

Known by his moniker “Pang Na Node”, the fugitive faces multiple charges in Thailand including murder and drug trafficking.

The operation to recapture him reportedly cost around 10 million baht (UA$271,800) and involved hundreds of police officers.

Authorities are now investigating who helped him escape from the country and enter Indonesia under a fake identity.

Chaowalit will be deported to Indonesia on the 4th of June and will be sent to a maximum security prison in Bangkok upon his return.


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