The prime suspect in the murder of a millionairess whose body was found in a refrigerator in Chiang Mai has confessed to murder. He said he acted alone, according to officers from Provincial Police Region 5.
Withun Sitabut, 39, was present at a news briefing on Friday morning after being arrested on Thursday. He is accused of murdering and robbing millionairess Wannee Jiracharoenying, in Chiang Mai.
The victim was found dead last Sunday in a refrigerator in a commercial building in Chom Thong district of Chiang Mai. Her corpse had been hidden in a refrigerator and covered in lime powder to mask the odour.
A manhunt was soon launched for Mr Withun, who was reportedly had been hired by Wannee as a helper.
According to the Bangkok Post, Mr Withun admitted he murdered the victim on Oct 11th. He forcing her to give him the PIN code for her ATM card, withdrawing approximately 1.7 million baht.
Chiang Mai Police Seized Cash, Gold and Motorcycle
Police seized 1.2 million baht in cash and a 5-baht weight gold necklace found in his possession. They also seized his new motorcycle, as evidence.
Pol Lt Gen Prachuap Wongsuk, chief of Provincial Police Region 5, said on Friday that money was the motive in the murder.
“The suspect claimed he had financial problems. He wanted the victim to help with his plan to buy a minibus,” he said.
A source close to the investigation said the suspect admitted going back to the Chiang Mai house on Oct 13. Saying he placed deodorizer cubes in the kitchen and fridge to cover up the unpleasant smell.
He the stole the victim’s BMW, withdrew the money and asked his girlfriend, to go to Rayong with him. He left the victim’s BMW with a pawnshop in Chiang Mai and they flew to Bangkok.
After the Rayong trip, the pair went to Nakhon Pathom where he told her about murdering Wannee in Chiang Mai. After returning to Chiang Mai on Oct 29, he bought a motorcycle and fled to Nakhon Sawan.
It took the police a few days to track his whereabouts. Mr Withun had previously worked as a disaster relief volunteer and he had used this experience to escape police by camping in the forest.
However, police managed to track his mobile phone signal as he remained in contact with Ms Nam.
On Wednesday night, Chiang Mai police learned that Mr Withun had travelled to Nakhon Sawan, where he was caught.