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Wisut ''Ae'' Tangwittayaporn, gunned down by assassins today

Phuket Assassins Strike: Journalist Shot Dead

Thursday, January 12, 2012
UPDATE

Phuket journalist Khun Ae, aged about 40, was pronounced dead by doctors about 10.40am after being gunned down on Thursday morning by two men who appeared to be paid assassins.

Original Report

PHUKET: A well-known Phuket journalist and red political activist has been critically wounded in a Phuket shooting that bears the hallmarks of an assassination.

Wisut ''Ae'' Tangwittayaporn was shot at four times in Thepkasattri Road, Phuket City, about 9.10am as he turned his black Honda Jazz into the main road from his home in a lane.

The shooters have been described as two men on a motorcycle, wearing sunglasses.

Khun Ae's wife Jiraporn ''Ji'' Hosakul was in the front passenger's seat of the Jazz as her husband turned left into Phuket's main thoroughfare near SuperCheap supermarket.

He was heading north towards the bypass road junction, moving right and intending to do a u-turn to swing back towards central Phuket City.

The motorcycle cut off the Jazz and the pillion passenger fired as he stepped off the motorcycle and in front of the car, Khun Ji has told police.

She was unharmed. She says she also remembers the numberplate of the Honda Click as it sped away.

As police swarmed over the area where the shooting took place today, an all-points alert went out across Phuket for the motorcycle and its riders.

Members of Phuket's journalistic fraternity gathered at Vachira Hospital in Phuket City as Khun Ae, shot at least once, fought for life.

Phuket Governor Tri Augkaradacha also raced to the hospital's emergency room on hearing of the shooting.

At 10am, doctors were still treating Khun Ae for at least one and possibly more bullet wounds. His condition was described as ''critical.''

As a journalist - despite being a red activist in predominantly yellow-tinged Phuket - he was highly regarded.

Khun Ae was to have led a deputation of Pheu Thai party officials from Bangkok to Phuket's Freedom Beach tomorrow amid allegations of corruption over the title to land fronting the beach.

Comments

Comments have been disabled for this article.

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Very sad news I wish him well.

Posted by Tbs on January 12, 2012 10:21

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i wish you will be safe. All our love.

Posted by Media's friend on January 12, 2012 10:31

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Very sad news to read this, RIP K Ae.

Posted by Rung on January 12, 2012 11:00

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its really time the garbage and corruption is cleaned up. this island really is starting make me sick. it's disgusting.

Posted by john s on January 12, 2012 11:24

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RIP Khun Ae.

Posted by katabeachbum on January 12, 2012 11:24

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Gunning down journalists is a dramatic demonstration of the ills in a society.

Journalists are messengers and pivotal in a democracy.

Mob rule is making alarming inroads in Thailand. The fact that the Governor showed up at the hospital suggests that he understands the gravity of this incident.

If an MP can shoot and kill a rival in broad daylight in front of several witnesses and keeps walking around free with the police powerless to do anything at all, is it any wonder that we see this happening ?

People do whatever they want because they can. For this I blame the lack of law enforcement. Corruption is the root cause for it.

Unless the Police Force as a whole is totally overhauled, I see little or no hope for things getting any better in the near future.

On the contrary it seems to be getting worse and worse.

I hope the assailants and above all those BEHIND the assassination are apprehended and brought to justice.

Posted by Steve C. on January 12, 2012 11:50

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RIP Khun Ae

Posted by Nick on January 12, 2012 12:05

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RIP. I suppose there's going to be a lot of speculation as to the motive. A friend of mine in the UK just read the news and emailed me.

"What a sad state Phuket has become. If they are not killing each other, they are ripping off the tourists with every imaginable scam with fear from law enforcement. Looks like Phuket is off the menu - Baghdad is looking like a much safer tourist destination!"

See how quickly bad news travels, which in turn makes the tourist reconsider their travelling here.

Posted by Graham on January 12, 2012 13:05

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Damn shame.

Posted by Relic on January 12, 2012 14:05

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This article is going tp replace one of the other top stories on the right of this page:

1.Unsafe Phuket: Resort Declines to Compensate Robbed Aussie Tourists
2.Children Cry in Fear: Tourists Escape Sinking
3.Phuket Pub Bar Attack: Hollywood Media Notes Star's Presence in Burst of Bad Publicity
4.Phuket Crackdown by DSI on Expat-run Businesses in Tourism, Property, Media
5.Man Wanted for Stabbing Phuket Resort Owner Surrenders to Police

Welcome to Phuket

Posted by Observe on January 12, 2012 15:28

Editor Comment:

We do also write the good news, Observe, but it's certainly true that readers follow the bad with greater interest. Here's hoping there's less of it in future.

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Welcome to Thailand.. and to Phuket, the land of the fake smile..

Posted by Dave on January 12, 2012 18:43

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A source who has been following the case, but who did not want to be named, said he understood that the land was up for sale at B43 million per rai, or a total of B2.8 billion.
At these prices, 25.000 a sqm for jungle
close to a beach, everything, everywhere on the world is possible.

Posted by Alfred on January 12, 2012 20:53

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K. Editor, congratulations, once more, for showing how a racist man and
an ambiguos journalist you are who doesn't publish and answer to the inconvenient (for you)comments wrote by non native English!
Is common opinion among foreigners, who reside in Phuket, what Phuket has become and what in its Thai M*** organizations' methods ( also used by private families and businessmen)!
Even if you avoid publishing those kind of comments, the reality of Phuket is like that, and your idea about
"Phuket like a paradise place where to live", remains only in your dreams!
The last murder of today, confirms the truth of the comments which you avoid to publish! If you haven't got a logic and neutral conscience, may be you'd better think to change job!

Posted by Mario on January 14, 2012 21:32

Editor Comment:

As an Italian, you should know that what happens on Phuket is nothing like the real Mafia. The latest murders appear to be both committed by selfish people who are not connected to mobsters. In any language, Mario, you only seem capable of imagining the worst about everybody. That's sad - for you.

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By the way. K. Editor, look at today's news: 90% are about murder. killing and deaths!
Well. you like or not, this is Phuket's reality!

Posted by Mario on January 15, 2012 15:20

Editor Comment:

This would be like looking at today's news from Europe and imagining that every week there is a ''Titanic.'' You constantly exaggerate and name-call, Mario, so your opinion about Phuket or anything else has little value.

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K. Editor, your opinion isn't a law!
Your ideas are wrong as humans mistakes would recognize it in you and in your work-style! Not last the fact that you ( cut my last comment ) and you don't publish my entire comment itself!
So, who can't read the whole comment, can't understand the logic of our dialogues.
A journalist has to be honest and sincere, but you!

Posted by Mario on January 15, 2012 16:40

Editor Comment:

Mario, in my opinion, you only seek to add exaggeration and unwarranted criticism. And just like everyone else who has nothing to add except exaggeration and unwarranted criticism, you won't get published. Your comments have nothing to do with journalism.

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It might not be exactly the "Mafia" but Thailand can be "mafia-esque" with its family clans who exert often dominant levels of influence in their respective territories.

Very sad to hear about the gunning down of this journalist. Previously it used to be the gangsters/thugs fighting each other but now they seem to target people that will speak out against such issues.

Posted by rob on January 17, 2012 12:46

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Computer hard disk drives (together with back-ups) hold so much information - even stuff that may have been deleted - so could not an independent person from some journalists' association together with an IT expert examine these? There must be clues and names. Maybe the police got to the computer first, but did they get the back-ups? Surely all good journalists keep back-ups. Sad news indeed when such a cowardly crime is committed.

Posted by Pete on January 17, 2012 17:21


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