The manhunt follows police tracking down where the woman, now identified as Sopa Thanimkarn, 39, lived in Phuket.
Ms Sopa was not staying at the address in Srisoonthorn given in order to enter Phuket on Jan 19. Instead. Ms Sopa and her husband, who police have yet to name, were living in a shack in Baan Pasak, Cherng Talay, police confirmed.
At the shack, officers today found a blood soaked mattress. They also found blood stains on the refrigerator door and on other items in a plastic bag.
Police have declined to reveal further details in the investigation, but Soiporn Prateep Na Thalang, 50, a relative of the now fugitive Suchart, said that he was known to be a jealous man.
Ms Sopa and Suchart had lived together for about 10 years. The couple sold seafood together, she said.
Suchart had been jailed for about six months for selling drugs. He was released in December, she added.
“He was jealous of his wife and a petty thief,” Ms Soiporn said.
“Not long ago he threatened Mr Jeng, who operates a noodle stall nearby, with a Thai Pradit [homemade] gun,” she added.
“He said he was going to shoot Mr Jeng because he was jealous of his wife, who reported the incident at Cherng Talay Police Station,” Ms Soiporn explained.
“But the matter remained silent, until now. It appears that he killed her because he was jealous,” she said.
“We knew that he is hot-tempered and he frequently argued with his wife, and then we learned through the news that his wife was found murdered,” Ms Soiporn said.
One neighbour questioned as a witness explained that it is now believed that Ms Sopa was slain elsewhere and her body brought back to the shack, and then later transported in the couple’s motorbike with sidecar (salaeng) and dumped beside the road south of Patong.
The neighbour, who built the fence around the shack and who asked to be named only as “Mr Chang”, said that Ms Sopa and Suchart had not been seen for days.
The couple sold seafood at a stall in front of their shack, Mr Chang explained.
The couple were always seen together, he added.
Ms Nittaya, who owns and operates the Isan Lam Toey shop in Baan Pasak, said that she did not know Suchart by name, but added that they often bought fish that they sold at their stall.
When the couple came to her stall, Ms Sopa was usually quiet, letting Suchart do the talking.
Ms Nittaya also said that she had not seen Suchart since Ms Sopa’s body was found.
** The fugitive husband’s name has now been confirmed as Suchart ‘Moo’ Gunpai, not Suijn. See story here.