Naji Sami Bouakkz was charged yesterday (Feb 15) with reckless driving causing physical injury and failing to stop after being involved in an accident, Patong Police confirmed.
Patong Police were notified of the incident at about 7:50pm last Friday via the 191 national call centre, reporting that a woman had been injured in a hit-and-run while she was crossing a street near Sai Nam Yen Rd, police said.
Officers and rescue workers from the Kusoldharm Foundation soon arrived at the scene, and the woman, Maliwan Sararat, 45, originally from Roi Et Province, was rushed to Patong Hospital. Due to the nature of her injuries she was soon transferred to Vachira Phuket Hospital in Phuket Town.
Through CCTV police tracked the motorbike, ridden by a foreign man wearing a white shirt and a black Helmet to the Triple L Hotel on 50 Pi Rd.
Bouakkz and the person riding pillion on the motorbike at the time of the hit and run, Chahine Yuce, walked out of the hotel around 7:58pm. At about 8:53am, Bouakkz returned to the parked motorbike, a Yamaha TMAX, and rode away, police said.
Bouakkz then returned the Yamaha TMAX to the shop where he rented it, Nueng Motorbike on Prachanukhro Rd, at 12:40pm on Tuesday (Feb 14), police noted.
Officers arrived at the shop and questioned the owner, who said that the front of the motorbike showed signs of impact in a collision. Attempts to cover up the damage had been made, the owner confirmed.
The shop owner called Bouakkz to return to the shop, where police placed him under arrest at 7:33pm, officer reported.
Officers explained to Bouakkz that CCTV footage had confirmed he was riding the bike at the time of the hit-and-run.
Bouakkz and the TMAX motorbike were both taken to Patong Police Station.
Bouakkz was charged after his companion Yuce yesterday confirmed that Bouakkz was riding the motorbike at the time of the incident, police said.
Police noted that at the time the motorbike hit Ms Maliwan, Bouakkz was riding too fast to be able to avoid hitting her.
Not stopping to help Ms Maliwan and immediately reporting the collision was a further offence under the law, officers said.
Police made no mention of whether Bouakkz had the correct licence to ride a motorbike in Thailand, despite Patong Police and Phuket transport officials claiming to crack down on the issue following a mass motorbike rally through the streets of Patong last week by mostly French nationals.
Patong Police and Adcha Buachan, Chief of the Phuket Land Transport Office (PLTO), have claimed to have taken action against rental shops for renting out vehicles to tourists without the correct licence to drive a vehicle in Thailand.
Patong Police and Phuket transport officials even met with the French honorary consul for Phuket to discuss the issue.
So far PLTO Chief Adcha has avoided plainly confirming whether the compulsory accident insurance required for a vehicle to be legally on a public road remains in effect if the driver does not have the correct driver’s licence.
Kurt | 17 February 2023 - 13:53:17