PHUKET – 22 Year-old Australian Thomas Keating will be unable to leave Thailand, pending a Thai court hearing on a charge of reckless driving causing the death of his partner Emily Collie in a jet-ski crash, despite Police indicating that given Mr Keating’s early guilty plea his case could be resolved within days.
Police said they would recommend a suspended sentence because of the plea, his grief and his expressions of remorse, allowing him to go home.
However, according to the the Phuket News a court official said Mr Keating must present himself to the Phuket Provincial Court at 10am on Friday, June 23 to hear the verdict for or against him.
The official declined to reveal the amount of bail posted to release Mr Keating.
Thomas Keating, the partner of Emily Jayne Collie, who was killed when there two jet skis crashed in waters off Phuket, pleaded guilty to the chage of reckless driving causing the death and surrendered his passport to court officials, saying he flet “unbelievable sorrow” over the crash.
The Phuket News quoted a court official saying that although Mr Keating has pleaded guilty the court still has to receive the evidence against him and then hand down a sentence.
In a statement after the crash Mr Keating said I take responsibility for what happened. And I have decided that the best thing is to accept a charge of reckless driving leading to death.
“I would like to express my unbearable sorrow at the loss of my soulmate, Emily, who I loved more than anything in this world, as well as my never-ending apologies and condolences to (her parents) Ian and Sally Collie and the rest of their family.”
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is providing consular assistance to an Australian man who has been charged over a jet-ski accident in Thailand, and his family, in line with the Consular Services Charter.
“The Australian Government is unable to interfere with the sovereign legal processes of other states,” the spokesperson said.
By Geoff Thomas