BANGKOK – A father who was over his head in debt has killed his wife, 25, and two young children, then slashed his own throat at his car audio shop in Klong Sam Wa district of Bangkok on Thursday night.
A neighbor called police to the small, one-storey NC Auto Sound premises off Hathai Rat Road in Bang Chan sub-district about 7.30pm.
In the bedroom they found the body of Kingkaeo Pongpairote, 25, holding her dead 15-month old daughter and a 5-year-old girl lying dead nearby. All three had their throats cut. There was drying blood on the walls and pooled on floor.
The husband, Natthasak Khamkhern, 46, was also in the room. He also had a large slash wound across his throat, but was alive, gasping for breath. He was rushed to hospital. A 30-centimetre-long blood-stained knife was found at the scene. He is now on suicide watch according toPolice Bureau Division 3 chief Pol Maj General Somnuek.
Teerapol Detchang, 37, who has an auto garage nearby, said a friend of Mr Natthasak had phoned, asking that he urgently check out the car audio shop. The friend said Mr Natthasak has complained about the burden of having to repay 8,000 baht a day on a debt with a loan shark.
Mr Teerapol rushed to the shop and discovered the bodies and the injured Mr Natthasak.
Police said surveillance camera footage showed a man arrived at the shop in a black pickup truck on Thursday evening. Neighbours said the man came every evening to collect payment, but the shop was closed.
Meanwhile, Police are probing the loan shark motive speedily as the government has a policy to crack down on illegal moneylenders and influential figures.
A source at the Metropolitan Police Bureau said that the city police chief Pol Lt-General Suttipong Wongpin had also signed an instruction for his subordinates, to speedily investigate the case and provide him with periodic updates.
Thailand’s household debt has been on the rise over the past decade, up from an average of 116,681 baht in 2007 to 178,994 baht in 2017, but should be measured with commensurate growth in wages, inflation and the country’s GDP.
The figures show that Thailand’s debt for farming is around 16% of the total debt bill. 36% is spent on buying property and land whilst Thais only go into debt for education – around 1.6% of their total borrowings.
More disturbingly Thais are using borrowings and credit cards for keeping their lifestyles and daily costs alive. 39% of all Thai debt is for daily consumption items.
The three provinces that have the highest rate of debt are #1 Pathum Thani, #2 Krabi, #3 Nontaburi. The average debt for all Thais is 179,000 baht. Bangkok has the highest household debt at 202,000 baht per person.