Singaporean Businessman Ambushed in Thailand: A Love Triangle, Air Gun Assault, and a Criminal Gang Connection
Love can be a dangerous game.
A Singaporean businessman found himself unwillingly embroiled in the activities of a criminal gang shortly after being introduced to a “business partner” by his spouse. In what seemed to be a love triangle gone awry, the 47-year-old businessman found himself attacked by five assailants in Thailand, shot over 20 times with an air gun, and had a wine bottle smashed over his head.
What’s worse, the businessman’s wife and child were taken from him after the incident.
Here’s how this unfortunate series of events unfolded.
Singaporean Businessman Introduced to Thai “Business Partner” by Wife, Began to Suspect The Nature Of Their Relationship
According to an interview with Shin Min Daily News on 17 October, Liang (Hanyu Pinyin) had met his wife while on a business trip to Thailand in 2018. After tying the knot, Liang had invested more than S$200,000 to help his wife start a grocery business.
The couple settled down in a villa in Mae Sot, a city in Western Thailand that borders Myanmar.
Shortly after, Liang’s wife introduced him to a 29-year-old Thai individual named Chairat Setthiwanit. While Liang and Chairat initially discussed starting a car-buying and selling business, the two did not cooperate in the end.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Liang was stuck in Singapore and was unable to fly to Thailand. However, the businessman had been keeping tabs on his wife’s frequent interactions with Chairat.
Suspicious of the nature of their relationship, Liang flew to Thailand in September 2019 and made arrangements to pick up his wife and child from Mae Sot and move them to Bangkok.
While Liang made it clear that he would end the relationship if his wife continued to stay with Chairat, his wife claimed that she had been forced by the man. She also revealed that Chairat was a local gangster.
While in Bangkok, Liang and his family were able to live without any incident. However, a few months after moving back to their villa in Mae Sot, Liang became a victim of a violent attack.
Five Thai Individuals, Suspected to Be Part of A Criminal Gang, Were Involved in the Attack
On 8 March 2022, five individuals, including Chairat and his brother, Chajita, climbed over the wall of Liang’s villa.
When they rushed inside, Chairat and Chajita shot Liang with a handheld air gun and an air rifle respectively, while the other three men punched and kicked the businessman. A red wine bottle was also used in the altercation to hit Liang’s head.
During the scuffle, Liang’s wife knelt down and begged Chairat to spare her husband’s life. The Thai man then ordered Liang’s wife and child to leave him with him, leaving Liang alone in his residence.
Heavily injured but still conscious, Liang contacted his friends and they brought him to the police and the hospital.
While hospitalised, Liang was found to have sustained a major head injury that required 36 stitches and a total of 20 gunshot wounds near his left ribs, left chest and back. Liang told Shin Min Daily News that the wounds might have been even deeper had it not been for a towel he was wearing at the time.
Liang Was Falsely Implicated After Gang Made a False Facebook Account and Police Report to Incriminate Him
The incident that occurred in Liang’s residence became a police case that was heard in the Mae Sot court in February 2023.
Even though he was charged with causing serious injury to others, threatening others and damaging property, Chairat maintained that he was innocent. He and his brother were later sentenced to jail for one year and ordered to pay more than $S11,997 in compensation.
Despite the sentencing, Liang remains dissatisfied with the court’s judgement as he felt that the sentences were too lenient. Both Liang and the accused parties have both filed appeals regarding the sentences.
Liang maintains that the five individuals who attacked him were out to claim his life. He claimed that had the gunshot wound near his left chest been any deeper, it would have been fatal for him.
Court documents revealed that Liang was unable to go about his life normally for more than 20 days after the assault. After Liang came back to Singapore, he consulted doctors as he felt unwell in his head and chest. According to medical reports, he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and recurring nightmares.
To add on to Liang’s frustration, he also revealed that he was almost implicated during the case.
As Chairat was allegedly part of an extensive criminal network in Thailand, his wife was unable to stand up to him. Chairat then forced Liang’s wife to file a false police report in Thailand claiming that her husband had impersonated her on Facebook, which led to the police to seek out Liang.