NAKHON PATHOM – Dutch national Mathew Mannen was arrested this afternoon while on the run in Cambodia after he allegedly smashed his Thai girlfriend with a tablet to death at their home outside of Bangkok.
Mathew Mannen, 40, was caught by border police at his hotel room in the Koh Kong province of Cambodia and confessed to murdering his girlfriend Pornpan Kaewkok-klang, 35, police said, because she went on Facebook despite his forbidding it.
Mathew Mannen said he took away a computer tablet from Pornpan and a fierce argument ensued. His wife died after he pushed her and her head struck the edge of a wardrobe. He denied striking her with the tablet.
Police say they are not convinced by his statement as the victim had sustained serious facial and head injuries and her torso had bruises, indicating that she was assaulted violently, Pol Col Jaruak said.
Her father, Kamsorn, 60, said he came to check on Pornpan after he could not reach her for three days, only to find her body in the living room.
Mr Kamsorn said his daughter had been with Matthew Mannen for two years and just moved in to the house three months ago.
Sam Phran district investigator Charnthanapat Salimasakul said Pornpan’s head and face appeared to have been struck with a hard object and a damaged tablet computer was found near her body.
A handwritten message in English, believed to have been penned by Mr Mannen, was found on the wall. It reproached the deceased. Forensic experts believed Pornpan had been dead for at least three days.
Pol Lt Charnthanapat said neighbours heard the couple had a loud argument on Saturday night and saw Mr Mannen drive a pickup truck out the next morning and had not returned. Some reported they heard the quarrel was over the woman’s frequent use of Facebook and the Line messaging app. The fight, they said, went on for an hour.
Police assumed the suspect may have killed his wife in a fit of jealous rage. He may have struck her with a hard object or the tablet and fled the arrest on the next day.