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Retired Policeman Shoots and Kills Plaintiff and Lawyer in Court Room

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Suriyan Hongwilai, spokesman for the Court of Justice, said the shooting happened before the judge had not entered the courtroom.

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A retired policeman involved in a land dispute case shot and killed the plaintiff and his lawyer before being fatally shot by an on-duty police officer. The horrific incident happened in a Chanthaburi courtroom on Tuesday morning.

The man also wounded two other people who accompanied the slain plaintiff into the court.

Ret.Pol Maj Gen Thanin Chantratip, 67, was a defendant in a 10-year-long civil lawsuit. The lawsuit was concerning 86 blocks of land covering about 3,800 rai in Chanthaburi Province.

He was in court waiting for a hearing in a related criminal lawsuit concerning false complaint and false testimony allegations when land-case plaintiff Bancha Porameesanaporn arrived with his wife and two lawyers.

Media reported that the two sides began arguing and Pol Maj Gen Thanin drew his pistol and opened fire.

Bancha, 61, and lawyer Wijai Sukharom, 51, died later at Prapokklao Hospital. Mr. Bancha was a lawyer for former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra during her rice-pledging scheme case.

Mr. Bancha’s wife and plaintiff Supaporn and another lawyer, Wichai Udomthanapat, were also wounded.

Ret.Pol Maj Gen Thanin was in turn shot by an on-duty police officer and severely wounded. He later also succumbed to his wound according to Thai media.

Suriyan Hongwilai, spokesman for the Court of Justice, said the shooting happened before the judge had not entered the courtroom.

He also said the two sides had often argued with each other at past hearings.