Somkhid Phumphuang


Somkhid Phumphuang

Serial Killer Finally Gets His Just Desserts

March 08, 2010

The serial killer of 5 masseuses and sex workers, has finally been sentenced to death after having twice been given a life sentence. The final sentence is for strangling masseuse, Miss Pongpan Sabchai, a traditional massage lady in hotel room in Lampang Province.

Pattaya, 8 March, 2010, [PDN]: Somkhid Phumphuang, 41, from Nakhon Si Thammarat was sentenced to death on March 2 for the murder of Miss Pongpan Sabchai, a traditional massage lady, in a hotel room in Lampang Province, six years ago. After strangling the woman, he stole her gold ring, mobile phone and gold earring, with the approximate value of Bt5,000. The victim had apparently been 2-months pregnant at the time of her death.

Somkhid, a juvenile delinquent, who was raised by his uncle after the early death of his parents, had led a life of crime since being thrown out of school for theft. Following school, he was found work in a wood factory by his uncle, but was sacked for stealing Bt50,000. In addition, Somkhid framed a local businessman, giving false testimony in court, which resulted in the victim being jailed for six years. The victim swore to kill Somkhid in revenge when he was released. Somkhid, himself, served a four-year jail sentence for robbery. He has also been involved in drug and arms trading in Esarn.

Somkhid apparently had a penchant for staying in large hotels on his itinerant travels and successfully evaded the police by losing himself in large crowds. His evasion was also helped by assuming a number of aliases, including Daeng Phumpuang, Suwat Chanarong, Suchart Kingkaew and Narong Nilnet.

His first murder was apparently carried out 6 years previously in Mukdahan on January 30, 2004, when Warunee Pimpabutr, 25, a cabaret singer had been found drowned in a hotel room bathtub. The hotel’s register showed that Somkid had rented the room where the murder was committed, and he was also positively identified from a police photograph.

Somkhid, it would appear, favoured the same modus operandi, working from hotel rooms and strangling his victims. The second killing occurred on June 4, in similar circumstances to the murder of Warunee, where Pongpan Sabchai, a 34-year-old masseuse, was found strangled in a Lampang hotel room.

Next, Patcharee Amatanirand, 39, another traditional Thai masseuse, was found strangled in a room of the Caesar Hotel on June 11. She had apparently been accompanied by a man who checked in under the name of Narong Nilnet.

On June 19, yet another masseuse, 37-year-old Porntawan Pangkabutr, was found drowned in a hotel room bath in Udon Thani. This time, CCTV footage as well as eyewitnesses revealed Somkhid’s involvement.

Police, by this time, were convinced they had a serial killer on their hands and began a manhunt. However, Somkhid was one step ahead and managed to strangle yet another woman, this time Sompong Pimpornpirom, 36, a sex worker, whose nude body was found in a Buri Ram hotel room on June 21. To add to his image on CCTV footage, Somkhid’s fingerprints were found on a beer glass nearby Sompong’s dead body.

Soon after, Somkhid was successfully apprehended. The death sentence which was handed down at his first trial, however, was transmuted to life imprisonment. This incredibly happened a second time, whilst he was in jail serving his first sentence, as Somkhid pled guilty and also returned some of his ill-gotten gains to the family of his victim.

Due to the incredibly laborious process of the Thai legal system, Somkhid’s third trial for murder has only just appeared before the courts, which occurred on March 2, 2010. The evidence was damning, a friend of the victim witnessed her sitting with the offender. She later told her that Somkhid was paying her Bt5,000 for staying with him for 3 days and 2 nights. In addition, a room service waiter positively identified Somkhid as having shared food with the victim. Despite Somkhid’s plea that police had tried to discredit him, this time there was no escape for the callous murderer as the judge handed down his final verdict, death, with no chance of appeal. Although leniency had marked the previous trials, and the process had been incredibly long-winded, justice finally prevailed.

Serial killer gets life

A man accused of murdering five masseuses in a 2005 killing spree received a life sentence yesterday for the first victim's death

August 22, 2009

The Criminal Court originally sentenced Somkid Phumpuang to death for killing Warunee Pimpabutr in January 2005 but later commuted the sentence to life imprisonment, citing his confession during the police investigation and trial.

Somkid, 45, remains in court custody awaiting four other trials for his alleged murders of four other victims later over a sixmonth period.

His lawyer said yesterday's life sentence would be appealed.

Somkid was also handed a threeyear prison term for stealing the victim's valuables.

Court documents indicate Somkid took Warunee to room 609 of the Ploy Palace Hotel in Mukdahan on January 30, 2005, where they argued over her service fee. He drowned her in the bathtub and absconded with her valuables.

Four more victims were later killed in other northeastern hotels, prompting a public outcry and subsequent massive police hunt for the killer before Somkid was arrested on June 29 of that year. Warunee, 25, was the youngest victim. The other four were in their late 30s.

Confessed killer pleads not guilty

September 23, 2005

A man who confessed to killing four masseuses over a span of six months last year yesterday pleaded not guilty during his first hearing in the Criminal Court.

Somkid Phumpuang faces charges of premeditated murder for the first two victims, whom he allegedly killed after using their massage and sex services. The trial for this case will begin on November 7. The court will hear his plea on counts for the last two victims on November 14. In his statement to police, Somkid, 41, claimed he killed the women over disputes about their fees for massage as well as sex.

‘Serial killer’ confesses to murdering four sex workers in cross-country spree

‘They wanted too much money’

The Nation

June 30, 2005

Serial killer Somkid Phumpuang, 41, wanted for the killing of five sex workers in several provinces, was arrested at a house in Chaiyaphum's Muang district where he had been hiding for the past week.

CHAIYAPHUM: -- Police yesterday arrested a suspected serial killer at a house in Chaiyaphum’s Muang district where he had been hiding for the past week.

Somkid Phumpuang, 41, was wanted for the killing of five sex workers in several provinces.

Somkid, who also goes by a number of aliases, admitted to killing four women, allegedly because of arguments over fees for sex.

“I killed them out of anger because sometimes they overcharged and double-charged me after I had sex with them,” he told reporters calmly, according to Associated Press.

“I spent the money that I robbed from them to buy more sex from prostitutes.”

Somkid faces numerous charges of murder and theft, and is in detention pending an investigation and assessment of his psychological state.

After his arrest, Chiang Mai police yesterday suggested that he might have murdered up to six victims because a woman was found murdered at an apartment in the northern province in a manner reminiscent of Somkid’s alleged other crimes.

The suspect was found at the house of a widow who was charmed by Somkid two weeks ago, after they met at a bus terminal.

Somkid claims he killed his victims over disputes about the women’s service fees. However, police have expressed doubts about his motives and will be using psychiatrists to help with their investigations.

“He appears cognisant, but we need the advice of the experts,” said Crime Suppression Division commander Maj-General Winai Thongsong.

According to Somkid, he travelled by train to commit murders in Mukdahan, Lampang, Udon Thani and Buri Ram. When his crimes hit the headlines earlier this month, he hid at his girlfriend’s home.

The suspect yesterday told reporters that he would prefer the death sentence to spending time in jail for his wrongdoings.

Winai said that his division planned to take over Somkid’s case from the various local police stations involved, as he feels that a single investigation of all offences would be tighter than several separate probes. He added that his division would work closely with police in Trang to determine whether Somkid was involved in the murder of traditional Thai masseuse, Patcharee Amatanirand, 39, at a hotel in the southern province.

Meanwhile, Somkid’s uncle, Kling Kingkaew, said that he thought his nephew deserved the death sentence. He said Somkid had always been a hot-tempered troublemaker.

“I will not be sad if he is executed. I would also like to thank the police for arresting him. The arrest will ensure that he won’t be able to kill any more people,” Kling said from his hometown of Nakhon Si Thammarat.

Serial Killer strikes again

June 29, 2005

A masseuse found murdered in Trang is believed to be the fifth victim of a serial killer who previously murdered four sex workers in Mukdahan, Lampang, Udon Thani and Buri Ram, police said yesterday.

Patcharee Amatanirand, 39, a traditional Thai masseuse, was found strangled to death in a room of the Caesar Hotel on June 11. She had arrived with a man who checked in under the name of Narong Nilnet.

Police believe she was killed by Somkid Phumpuang, 41, who is now the subject of a countrywide manhunt. He reportedly uses the aliases of Daeng Phumpuang, Suwat Chanarong, Suchart Kingkaew and Narong Nilnet.

Crime Suppression Division commander Maj-General Winai Thongsong has ordered Crime Suppression police to cooperate with local police in combing the Northeast, where they believe Somkid to be hiding.

They searched a house in Khon Kaen yesterday but found no trace of the fugitive.

Police investigating Somkid’s background have learned that the Nakhon Si Thammarat native has only a Prathom-2 education. They say he spent four years in jail on charges of robbery and was released in 1988. He has also been involved in drug and arms trading in the Northeast.

Kling Kingkaew, Somkid’s uncle, told police that Somkid’s parents died when he was young. The uncle raised him from the age of eight but called him a delinquent child, saying he had been dismissed from school for stealing. Kling said he sent Somkid to work in a wood factory, but he stole Bt50,000 from there and had not been home for 30 years.

In any case, Kling said, Somkid dared not return, because he had framed a businessman with false testimony in court. The businessman was jailed for six years as a result and announced he would shoot Somkid when he was freed.

Crime Suppression deputy commander Colonel Pisit Pisutsak said police were closing in on the suspect. Cooperation between his division and local police meant they were within a few days of catching him.

Major Suriyan Indawan, a Mukdahan investigator, said Somkid liked to stay in big hotels. He was difficult to trace, because he always travelled by mingling with big crowds on public transport.

Provincial hotels had been warned to watch for him, and the suspect’s picture had been sent to police stations throughout the Kingdom.

Lt-Colonel Chokchai Chusaeng, an inspector in Lampang’s Muang district, said police were working closely together for fear Somkid would kill again.

The manhunt began after the nude body of strangled sex worker Sompong Pimpornpirom, 36, was found in a Buri Ram hotel room on June 21. Certain aspects of the crime suggested that a serial killer was on the loose.

Somkid was singled out by investigators after they checked on a series of murders, beginning with the death of a cabaret singer in Mukdahan on January 30. Warunee Pimpabutr, 25, had been drowned in a hotel room bathtub.

The hotel’s check-in register showed that Somkid had rented the room, and witnesses positively identified him from a police photograph.

On June 4, in circumstances similar to Warunee’s murder, Pongpan Sabchai, a 34-year-old masseuse, was found strangled to death in a Lampang hotel room.

Two weeks later, on June 19, another masseuse, 37-year-old Porntawan Pangkabutr was found drowned in a hotel room bathtub in Udon Thani. This time, Somkid was identified in footage from the hotel’s security video system, and eyewitnesses also said they had seen him.

Latent fingerprints taken from the side of a beer glass found in the Buri Ram apartment where Sompong’s body was found last week were matched with Somkid’s from police records.

Thai police launch manhunt for serial killer of prostitutes

June 28, 2005

Thai police have launched a manhunt for a suspected serial killer who has already murdered at least five prostitutes, police said on Tuesday.

Crime Suppression Division launched the manhunt for their chief suspect, identified as Somkid Phumpuang, 41, after finding the naked body of sex worker Sompong Pimpornpirom, 36, in a hotel room in Buri Ram province on June 21.

Somkid is also suspected of strangling three other sex workers in Mukdahan, Lampang and Udon Thani provinces earlier this year, and since the slaying of Sompong, a fifth murder has been pinned on the serial killer.

"The fifth victim was found in Trang province," said Crime Suppression Division deputy commander Police Colonel Phisit Phisutthisak. "We know his movements," he said, adding police expected to catch Somkid soon.

Somkid was arrested in 2001 for giving false testimony about the murder of a provincial governor, for which he served a six month jail term.

Police files described the man as mentally disturbed with a "rampant libido." When under interrogation in the 2001, Somkid repeatedly begged police to take him to a brothel, reported The Nation newspaper.

Somkhid Phumphuang

Somkhid Phumphuang

Somkhid Phumphuang

Somkhid Phumphuang

Somkhid Phumphuang

Somkhid Phumphuang

Somkhid Phumphuang