Phuket’s Biggest Stories From the Past Week: Cases of Foreigners Behaving Badly Dominates Thai News

The following is our weekly feature in which we highlight the top local stories in our area of Phuket from the past week. The number of stories differs from week to week.

These are chosen and curated by our editorial team and are designed for our readers to get a quick “catch-up” of important stories they may have missed. We publish many stories daily and it is easy to lose track of important events or changes in our area. We do national recaps in a separate article, this is only the top local stories in Phuket.

They are in no particular order of importance but roughly in order of publishing. These are from Monday, March 11th to Sunday March 17th, 2024.

  1. Phuket officials are moving to cancel the license of an elephant foundation owned by Urs Fehr, a Swiss national after he reportedly assaulted a Thai woman on a beach.

The action, confirmed by Governor Sophon Suwannarat, compounds the legal troubles for Fehr, who has also lost his firearm license.

2. An 18-year-old American man allegedly sexually assaulted a pregnant horse in Thalang.

The man is seen on CCTV appearing to sexually abuse the horse with his hand.

3. Public access to Phuket’s Laem Nga Beach has been restored after a resolution was reached.

The agreement stipulates the continued public use of the road, with local authorities assuming responsibility for maintaining its safety and cleanliness.

The Royal Forest Department (RFD) is leading a multi-agency effort to reclaim reserved forest land encroached upon by a private company on Phuket’s Nui Beach.

The operation is part of an increased crackdown on illegal beachfront constructions across Thailand, prompted by a recent incident where a Swiss man assaulted a local doctor on what he believed was private property in Phuket.

4. A Russian man was found dead with a slit throat and signs of a struggle and foul play at a cannabis farm in Chalong, Phuket.

A prime foreign suspect, who was allegedly involved in the case of a Russian man found dead with his throat slit in Chalong, Phuket, has reportedly left Thailand.

An arrest warrant has been issued for a Tajikistani man who has already left Thailand for intent to murder after a Russian man was found dead at a cannabis farm in Chalong.

The suspect was last believed to be in Turkey with an INTERPOL Red Alert notice out for him.

5. A Singaporean motorbike rider faces legal charges after he allegedly defamed and attacked a traffic police officer in Cherng Talay.

A Singaporean national who was riding a motorbike was stopped as he was not wearing a helmet. He was also unable to provide a legal driving license. He was asked to come into the police box to pay penalty fines when he allegedly began a tussle with the traffic cop.

6. Chalong police officers captured two New Zealand nationals who allegedly refused to pull over for a traffic offense, evaded police arrest, and were later accused of assaulting an officer who pursued them in Mueang, Phuket.

There visas will be revoked and blacklisted from Thailand but they also face significant legal charges.

That’s it for this week. Be safe!

Goongnang Suksawat
Goong Nang is a News Translator who has worked professionally for multiple news organizations in Thailand for many years and has worked with The Pattaya News for more than four years. Specializes primarily in local news for Phuket, Pattaya, and also some national news, with emphasis on translation between Thai to English and working as an intermediary between reporters and English-speaking writers. Originally from Nakhon Si Thammarat, but lives in Phuket and Krabi except when commuting between the three.