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Phuket Tuk-Tuks Boosted By Murder of Tourist Who Chose to Walk

Wednesday, June 27, 2012
PHUKET: Tuk-tuk drivers on Phuket's west coast report a surge in business at night that is being attributed to the murder of Australian tourist Michelle Smith.

Mrs Smith, 60, was stabbed to death in a bag snatch that went wrong a week ago because she preferred to walk rather than pay the excessive fares being charged by Phuket's tuk-tuks.

''Business is better now,'' a driver from the rank outside the Katathani Beach Resort in Kata Noi said today. ''Most people are catching a tuk-tuk after dark instead of walking.''

The fare from Kata Noi to Kata beach, a journey of 1.4 kilometres, is 200 baht. It costs 300 baht to go a little further to Karon, 500 baht to Patong, and 500 baht to Phuket City, a driver told Phuketwan today.

Mrs Smith and her friend Tammee Lee were on foot and almost back at the Katathani after dinner in Kata when they were attacked by two men on a motorcycle.

The pair, Surasak ''Boy'' Suwannachot, 26, and and his getaway motorcycle rider, Surin Taptong, 37, who needed money to pay a dinner bill of 300 baht, are due to appear in court this afternoon.

Angry Australian tourists and a crowd of locals called out insults as the two men took part in a reenactment of the stabbing outside the Katathani yesterday.

Around the time the men are due in court, Phuket Governor Tri Augkaradacha and the island's top officials will be meeting nearby in Phuket City to plan more security camera coverage for Phuket as well as other ways that tourist safety and security can be improved.

Comments

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tourist should know that tuk tuk working at night time are far to be safe and the minimum risk being to be scammed

Posted by Anonymous on June 27, 2012 11:42

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Camera coverage only captures the crime. The money would be better spent stopping the crime with more police on the streets & public transport at a reasonable price. In any case, some people like to walk in the tropics. It is part of the holiday. They need to be protected, not videoed.

Posted by Logic on June 27, 2012 14:23

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200 baht for 1 kilometer ride! This is the problem with Phuket..tuk tuk mafia

Posted by Steve on November 11, 2012 09:52


Tuesday September 24, 2019
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