He was wanted on a court arrest warrant for the murder of Yutthaphan Phuang-ngam, 27, at a resort in Phu Pha Man district of the northeastern province of Khon Kaen on the night of Sept 7.
A housekeeper found the man dead with gunshot wounds, lying in the blood-stained water of a large curtained-off spa tub outside a bungalow room on Thursday morning. He and a 39-year-old woman, Benjamat Phukham, had checked-in together. She was missing.
According to police, the killer took Ms Benjamat with him at gunpoint as he fled in her car.The car was stopped in Lampang and he was arrested.
Ms Benjamat was sitting in the car’s front passenger seat, unhurt. A 9mm pistol with 47 rounds of ammunition was found in the car. Mr Rungroj was charged with murder and illegal possession of a firearm.
The suspect allegedly admitted to having shot the victim three times. He and Ms Benjamat gave conflicting statements over the motive for the shooting, police said.
She told police that she and Mr Rungroj had quarrelled frequently. She left him and returned to her home in Khon Kaen about a month ago. She had a new boyfriend, Yutthaphan, and they had gone together to the resort in Phu Pha Man district, where he was murdered.
Pol Maj Gen Montri Thetkhan, CSD commander, said Mr Rungroj was a wealthy man with a business in Samut Sakhon’s Mahachai market. He and Benjamat had been a couple before she ended their relationship.
Around 8pm on Wednesday, other guests informed resort staff that they had heard three shots fired inside the resort. The resort owner’s daughter-in-law went to check and found the male guest who was staying in room 4 holding the hand of the woman from room 3, and they were leaving the resort.
The dead man was discovered by a housekeeper the next morning. He had been shot three times, in the neck and chest.
Pol Maj Gen Noppakao Sommanas, chief of Khon Kaen police, said the suspect had been driving a Mercedes Benz with Bangkok licence plates when he earlier checked into another resort about one kilometre from the crime scene. He later borrowed a motorcycle from a resort employee.
He told the employee he was looking for his wife. She was staying at another resort but he did not know which one. She had sent a photo to his phone and told him to meet her there. The suspect tracked her down to the resort where the murder occurred, Pol Maj Gen Noppakao said.
Credit Bangkok Post