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Lee Aldhouse lodges a complaint with police on Phuket in 2010

VIP Inmate Rated Worst Phuket Prisoner

Friday, March 1, 2013
PHUKET: British murder suspect Lee ''Pitbull'' Aldhouse is ''the worst prisoner we've ever had,'' Phuket Prison Commander Rapin Nichanon said today.

The one-time kickboxer, extradited from Britain to Phuket to face the serious charge, is said to constantly seek the title of VIP - Very Important Prisoner.

Commander Rapin confirmed today what Phuketwan had heard from other sources - that the muscular, dark-eyed 30-year-old ''wants everything special.''

''He is in a dormitory with 30 other men,'' said the commander. ''But he would like a cell to himself.

''He demands extra space when he sits down to eat. He wants western food. Lee is very, very naughty,'' Commander Rapin said.

In December, Aldhouse became the first Briton to be sent to Thailand under an extradition agreement between the two countries that had been in place for 101 years.

The details of the deal remain secret. Although it cannot be confirmed, it's believed that Thai authorities undertook that the pugnacious Brit would not face the death sentence in Thailand.

However, by recently pleading not guilty to the murder of American Dashawn Longfellow, Aldhouse has left himself liable to a severe penalty if found guilty.

Phuket judges usually reduce sentences by half if an accused pleads guilty and saves the presentation of a long and sometimes complicated prosecution case.

In three months inside Phuket Prison, a 112-year-old facility built for 800 but currently housing 2300, Aldhouse has not endeared himself to fellow inmates or his jailers.

Phuketwan has been reliably informed by other sources in Phuket Prison that Aldhouse is a serial complainer.

Although he is sleeping in the least crowded dormitory in the prison, he has not been happy with the space for his bed, Commander Rapin said.

He asks for western meals - including steak - when all the inmates are served Thai food. Having spent two years in jail in Britain fighting extradition, Aldhouse has comparisons to make.

''Other foreigners are no problem,'' the commander said. ''But Lee is the worst prisoner we've had on Phuket, Thai or foreign.''

When Aldhouse arrived back on Phuket under escort in December, the special nature of his incarceration deal was spelled out at a meeting at Chalong Police Station, in southern Phuket, where the murder investigation was centred.

The Executive Director of International Affairs at Thailand's Attorney General's Department, Intranee Sumawong, made it plain to local police, to Phuket prosecutors and to those in charge of his incarceration that the Aldhouse case was special.

Thailand's lawyers here and in Britain had worked extremely hard to win him back. Extra care had to be taken so as not to breach the terms of the agreement with Britain, she said at a long meeting.

Khun Intranee had flown especially to Britain and joined senior police who escorted Aldhouse back to Phuket.

Unfortunately, Aldhouse was also in the room when Khun Intranee briefed police and his jailers about the special nature of the case.

''Lee now believes he is a VIP,'' Commander Rapin said today. ''He says to us 'If you don't do this for me, I am going to tell the embassy.'''

Among the ''extras'' Aldhouse is said to have sought are his own shower and his own toilet. ''He is also selfish and inclined to scam other prisoners,'' Commander Rapin said.

Although extremely crowded, people who have served time inside Phuket Prison, a landmark in Phuket City, say it's clean and efficiently run.

Ladyboy katoeys who have had breast enhancements are imprisoned as men. Those who have had full sex changes are treated as female prisoners.

Trusted women prisoners perform massages at a facility open to the public while male prisoners give car washes.

The extra income supplements the prison kitchen, where three meals are served a day when most Thai prisons only serve two.

Known as a reformer, Commander Rapin says his only means of disciplining Aldhouse when he is ''naughty'' is to reduce the number of visitors he is allowed.

Aldhouse still has some local Phuket friends. British embassy officials visit every eight weeks.

Today Phuket's Governor, Maitree Inthusut, announced some good news. The government has finally given permission for a new Phuket Prison to be built to relieve the overcrowding at the old one.

Commander Rapin said Phuket's new jail will be ''the best prison in Thailand.'' ''It will have security cameras, high-technology security, and vastly improved conditions for prisoners,'' he said.

Whether Lee Aldhouse is overjoyed at the news of the new jail, Commander Rapin was unable to say. The new prison will take between two and five years to build.

If found guilty of murdering Longfellow, a likable former US Marine, Aldhouse is likely to remain a VIP on Phuket for some time to come.

His trial resumes in August.

Comments

Comments have been disabled for this article.

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Whilst I'm in no way sympathetic to this individual at all, key to his treatment has to be the terms agreed between the UK and Thailand for his incarceration. These terms would certainly have been made clear to him before he left the UK. So, single cell, toilet and western food would be taken for granted in the UK, particularly for a prisoner on remand (don't forget he's not been convicted yet).

I think it's also extremely unethical for the head of the prison to bring these matters into the public domain, and I'm fairly certain that there will be a complaint from the UK Government forthcoming.

Posted by Phil on March 1, 2013 18:31

Editor Comment:

The Thai authorities - or at least some of them - would have been prepared to provide more western-style treatment if it had been required to win an extradition. However, it proved unnecessary. The special conditions should, of course, be made public. Perhaps an enterprising reporter in Britain can use freedom of information legislation to discover what they are.

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Suck it up Aldhouse! If you (allegedly) do the crime in Thailand, you've got to do the time like a Thai.

Posted by L on March 1, 2013 18:35

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Lee Aldhouse is considered innocent unless proven guilty
He should be treated in the prison in the same manner as all of the other prisoners.

Posted by Paul on March 1, 2013 19:22

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Of course he complains all the time - he is English! Enjoy your bowls of rice and corn cobs.

Posted by Digger on March 1, 2013 21:11

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"However, by recently pleading not guilty to to the murder of American Dashawn Longfellow, Aldhouse has left himself liable to a severe penalty if found guilty.

Phuket judges usually reduce sentences by half if an accused pleads guilty and saves the presentation of a long and sometimes complicated prosecution case."

Not too different from a not-posted comment to the earlier story about Aldhouse. Mmh.

Anyway. That Aldhouse cheaply turned on his lawyer in the first round in court instead of getting his act together with the lawyer before entering the court, just adds to the picture. He must feel to be the victim here. Good Thai courts like to sort these things out. Actually I am starting to feel sorry for him, in a way.

Posted by Lena on March 1, 2013 21:52

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Sorry, in what way can you substantiate these comments?:

"The Thai authorities - or at least some of them - would have been prepared to provide more western-style treatment if it had been required to win an extradition. However, it proved unnecessary. "

I also think it important to recognise that the UK will not return any individual for justice where the country of accusation will impose the death penalty for the crimes the individual is accused of. That is fact, so effectively Thailand has guaranteed there will be no capital punishment (i.e. death).

Posted by Phil on March 1, 2013 22:22

Editor Comment:

We spoke to a senior Thai authority at the time of Aldhouse's court appeals who told us that if necessary, a western-style single cell would be built especially to house him.

''the UK will not return any individual for justice where the country of accusation will impose the death penalty for the crimes the individual is accused of.''

As the arrangement has not been made public, there is no evidence for such a deal. In what way can you substantiate these comments?

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No Pity for Aldhouse. He has quite the EGO for a guy that will be there for the next 20 years. After the conviction he will be in an overcrowded place for sure. He should get used to it now.

Posted by John on March 1, 2013 23:29

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All this "allegedly". Bull. Either he murdered Longfellow to revenge a beating from the club (as the prosecution argues) or he looked for his dog inside Longfellows apartment after a bar fight with him at 5 am and slaughtered Longfellow by sudden surprise and accident with a knife some people at a Seven Eleven throw at him and he needed as self defense because he was beaten in the club by the guy at who's place he thought he will find his dog shortly after (as the defense laid out). So both argue, that he stabbed Longfellow. With two cuts, that killed the American.

From the original report: "About 5am, police believe, the Englishman caught up with the American in the bedroom of the American's apartment at the resort and stabbed the American twice. "

Posted by Lena on March 2, 2013 00:03

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Seems he has some adjustment to do beween the English and Thai penal systems. theres no prisoners rights groups in Thailand.

Posted by slickmelb on March 2, 2013 02:25

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''the UK will not return any individual for justice where the country of accusation will impose the death penalty for the crimes the individual is accused of.''

As the arrangement has not been made public, there is no evidence for such a deal. In what way can you substantiate these comments?

Actually, Part 2 of the UK's Extradition Act of 2003 is very specific:

94 Death penalty

(1)The Secretary of State must not order a person???s extradition to a category 2 territory if he could be, will be or has been sentenced to death for the offence concerned in the category 2 territory.

(2) Subsection (1) does not apply if the Secretary of State receives a written assurance which he considers adequate that a sentence of death???
(a) will not be imposed, or
(b) will not be carried out (if imposed).

So, this defines the conditions that Thailand must have agreed to before extradition was allowed.

On his treatment in prison, assurances must also have been given by Thailand that no breach of the UK's Human Rights Act of 1998, and would have been part of the consideration made by the UK judiciary/Home Office in permitting the extradition. Remember that this was the first extradition to take place between the UK and Thailand.

Posted by Phil on March 2, 2013 11:01

Editor Comment:

We remember that well, Phil. How could we forget?

All along, we consistently reported the Thai authorities as being confident they would succeed. And all along, we were told by would-be experts that it would never happen - Britain's laws would stop it from happening. And you know what?

The would-be experts got it wrong. Precedents can be set, even after 101 years. It would certainly be interesting to know what the precise terms are. At this stage, we can only guess. But it's nice to know that, against the odds, Thai authorities - and Thai news sites - sometimes get it right.

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Like you, I was confident that extradition would take place, but equally confident that Thailand would have to satisfy the UK authorities that there would be no breach of the UK's statutory obligations and requirements. That is what I'm calling into question.

Incidentally, I've forwarded your article to the UK's Home Office as a FYI. Interesting if any diplomatic activity happens in the coming days/weeks.

Posted by Phil on March 2, 2013 11:54

Editor Comment:

We'd certainly like to know more about what transpired in the British courts. At this stage, only a freedom of information application in the UK might tell us the answer. Wikileaks seems to be out of the question. Unless something goes horribly wrong, it's just a matter from here on of justice taking its course. I do wonder, though, how the judiciary will take the arrangement into account. Surely it would need to be raised, if and when it becomes relevant, in open court?

By the way, Thai authorities have a refreshing openness and honesty that isn't found in the uptight West. Commander Rapin deserves to be commended for making the issue public. We were going to report it anyway. Secrecy is the scourge of British politics and society - look at the shocking Jimmy Savile case, for example. A whole nation kept a mass pedophile under cover. The reason? A once-open country has become conditioned to keeping secrets. We'd prefer more transparency, not less. I am sure the British ambassador realises the fault in this case all lies with Lee Aldhouse. Perhaps he should be told to behave.

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For someone having the nickname "Pit-bull", he sure whines a lot.

Kudos to the Phuketwan for another insightful article.

Posted by Fred Garvin on March 2, 2013 12:18

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"I am sure the British ambassador realises the fault in this case all lies with Lee Aldhouse. Perhaps he should be told to behave."

Well, thanks Editor

"Innocent until proved guilty." Remember? What fault are you referring to? Maybe failure to abide by an agreement that you have asked British citizens to follow-up under FOI. Maybe you could request it as an international journalist.

Posted by Tony on March 3, 2013 19:21

Editor Comment:

Of course Mr Aldhouse is innocent until proven guilty. His conduct in jail is another matter entirely. Perhaps a second reading of the article might help you to establish what it's about, Tony?

The cost of making FOI requests in many countries has been priced beyond the reach of most journalists, quite deliberately. I am sure Britain is no exception.

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Perhaps they should put him in solitary confinement and call it his own cell. See how he eats his steak in the dark.
It all seems a game to him, and that he likes to show off a lot. In this case towards the other 29 prisoners in his cell. No one to show off to in solitary confinement.
No sympathy from me. (which makes me wonder who these local friends are, that come to visit him.)

Posted by Tinkerbell on March 3, 2013 21:45

Editor Comment:

Is there provision for solitary confinement at Phuket Prison? Those who threaten to cause too many problems are usually made to wear handcuffs and leg shackles, which may be the local alternative.

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Lee Aldhouse is considered innocent unless proven guilty
He should be treated in the prison in the same manner as all of the other prisoners...Paul...That means he doesn't get steak...or extra space or a cell of his own with his own private toilet.

Posted by Ted Davis on March 14, 2013 14:19


Wednesday October 21, 2020
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