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After checking CCTV in the area, Chalong Police working with Phuket City Police officers led by Lt Col Thamasan Boonsong, tracked down and arrested Maitri Seibwiset, 22, in Baan Koktanod, Chalong on Friday (Dec 11).
Police said that before moving in and making the arrest, they had noticed that Maitri had recently exchanged a lot of foreign currency.
At Maitri’s home police seized: $12,000 in US banknotes; 89,000 Kazakhstani tenge in cash; three designer watches; one silver necklace; two gold necklaces, two bracelets (silver and gold); three gold rings; two silver rings; two pair of earrings; three credit cards; one handbag and the five Zakhapenkova family passports.
Maitri also took police to a nearby canal, where they recovered the safe stolen from the Zakhapenkova home.
Ms Zakhapenkova and her husband later identified all the items reported as stolen from their home on November 26.
However, police also seized at Maitri’s home five gold earrings and two gold lockets later identified as stolen from another victim, Miss Chantana Sooksuwan, whose home in Baan Borrae, Wichit, had also been robbed.
In making the arrest, police also seized Maitri’s Yamaha Fino motorbike, eight Fino frames, one pair of pliers, a helmet, five knives and three lighters.
Maitri admitted to robbing the two homes, and said that he had spent some of the money on drugs that he bought from contacts in Kathu and Rawai, police reported.
Maitri was ordered to undergo blood tests for drugs, which tested negative, and was so taken to Chalong Police Station where he was only charged with theft using getaway vehicle.
However, police confirmed that they had made two subsequent arrests in relation to the case in which two suspects – Wirachote Naophrai and Chageereen Thorthip – were charged with drugs possession with intent to sell.