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Alleged knife-wielder Surasak ''Boy'' Suwannachot yesterday

Phuket Murder: Pair Jailed After Reenacting More Scenes

Wednesday, June 27, 2012
PHUKET: Two men accused of killing Australian tourist Michelle Smith have been remanded in Phuket Prison without bail after going through reenactments of some of their activities.

Surasak ''Boy'' Suwannachot, 26, and his getaway motorcycle rider, Surin Taptong, 37, both face charges of murder and of possessing a deadly weapon in a public place.

The case was heard at 10am by a judge at Phuket Provincial Court. No application was made for bail.

Yesterday afternoon, the men were taken to the restaurant in the southern Phuket district of Chalong where they had dinnner before heading to the road outside the Katathani Beach Resort in Kata Noi where Mrs Smith, 60, and her companion were attacked.

Police took the men through a reenactment at the restaurant, where they threw the knife into a canal, and where they returned the getaway motorcycle to the wheel and tyre shop in Phuket City's Bypass Road. where Khun Surasak once worked.

Colonel Boonlert Ong-Kang, who heads the investigation, said today no decision had been made yet about whether it would be necessary for Mrs Smith's companion, Tammee Lee, 42, to return to Phuket to give evidence.

The case was being compiled rapidly and could be expected to proceed quickly, Colonel Boonlert said. The accused men will appear in court in person or by video from the jail every 12 days until the Phuket prosecutor is ready to proceed.

Phuket Prison is overcrowded with more than 1600 inmates in an institution built more than a century ago to house about half that number.

But conditions are regarded as good by the standard of Thai jails, with the Phuket Prison recently being declared a ''white'' jail - free from drugs, weapons and illicit mobile telephones.

The two men went through a reenactment of the murder earlier yesterday where they were the subject of angry taunts from Australian tourists and locals dismayed at the crime and the harm it could cause to Phuket's tourism industry.

Mrs Smith, a popular travel agent from Perth, was walking back from dinner while on a familiarisation tour designed to promote Phuket when she was killed.

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