A tour staffer has been charged with bodily harm causing injury and carrying a knife in public.
Our previous story:
Now for update:
The Karon Police Chief Colonel Khundet Na Nongkhai told the Phuket Express this afternoon (February 6th) that they questioned the prime suspect who they identified as Ms. Wiree S, 44, who is a staffer of a tour company.
Police did not release the name of the company.
Police seized a knife from Ms. Wiree which was put under a motorbike seat. Ms. Wiree admitted to police that she is the person who attacked the Chinese tourist on a video that went viral on social media.
Ms. Wiree admitted to Karon police that there was an argument over a refund for a tour but she claimed self defense and said she also tried to protect herself from the Chinese, who she claimed was furious and who she was afraid would hurt her first. Some reports claim he punched her first.
Colonel Khundet told the Phuket Express that regardless of her claims of self defense Ms. Wiree has been charged with bodily harm and carrying a knife in public. For the bodily harm charge, the punishment will be jail up to three months or a fine up to 60,000 baht (2000 USD), or both.
The unnamed tour company has a legal registered tour company license.
However, police are continuing their investigation to see if the tour company license will be suspended due to the incident.
The incident was reportedly over a pre-booked tour for 5,000 baht (150 USD) that fell through, with the tour company claiming the address of the hotel was wrong and the Chinese tourist saying the company simply didn’t show up or respond to calls for an hour.
The tourist demanded a full refund but was declined and got police involved, at which point the tour company agreed to refund 3000 baht, but keep 2000 for their time spent booking the tour and allegedly evening a taxi to a different hotel.
The Chinese tourist found this unacceptable, demanding their full refund, and this was when the situation reportedly escalated.
The tourist has reportedly already left the country.
This is a developing story.