Chiang Mai’s Provincial Court has issued an arrest warrant on Tuesday for a key suspect in the murder of a predominant business woman. Wannee Jiracharoenying, 58, decomposing body was found in a refrigerator in Chiang Mai on Sunday.
Police have identified the murder suspect as 39-year-old Withun Sitabut from Lampang. He is wanted on charges of robbery and murder, according to the Bangkok Post.
Wannee was reported missing by her brother, Worapan, on Sunday after family were unable to contact her for two weeks. She usually stayed at the house, a commercial building in Chom Thong district, while practising dharma.
Police investigators have reportedly obtained evidence and eyewitness accounts that Mr Withun, lied to a relative of Wannee. He sent a text message from Wannee’s phone saying that she was travelling to Vietnam.
Police said he was also filmed on a security camera using Wannee’s ATM card to withdraw money. He allegedly abandoned Wannee’s BMW and took a motorcycle taxi. Police also reported Mr Withun was caught on camera withdrawing cash from ATMs in Chiang Mai, Lamphun and Lampang before heading to Rayong.
Mr Withun, first met Wannee when he picked her up with a group of Buddhist nuns. He took them to Wat Phrathat Si Chom Thong for dharma practice.
Mr Withun and Wannee allegedly then became good friends and he was sometimes seen holding shopping bags for her at their local mall.
According to police, after murdering Wannee, Mr Withun drove Wannee’s BMW to pick up his wife and children. They traveled on a trip to neighbouring Chiang Rai, and later returned back to their home. Following the murder, Police said he reportedly transferred money to his wife so that she could buy gold.