The deferment follows the first court session of the trial starting on Aug 23. Pornthep has been charged with attempted murder, carrying a firearm in a public area without necessary reason, and firing a weapon in a public area.
An officer at Phuket Provincial Court told Kulthida Chananan, Mr Aroon’s wife, that the reason given for the deferment was the current COVID-19 situation in Phuket.
The lawyer representing Pornthep said that it was not convenient for witnesses to come to the court to give their testimonies on that day, Ms Kulthida said.
Asked whether Pornthep was still in remand, Ms Kulthida said “I think he’s still in prison and has not been released on bail.”
“We had a court appointment to hear witness testimonies and examine evidence on August 23, but the lawyer of the policeman [Pornthep] filed a request to postpone the testimonies. No one informed me before that day,” Ms Kulthida said.
“On that day, I went to the court to be told that the testimony was postponed. Luckily, Lawyer Kerdphol did not come to Phuket on that day,” she said.
Bangkok-based lawyer Kerdphol Kaewkerd, popular for taking up cases of gross injustice to protect the rights of those unable to afford legal representation, has volunteered to represent Mr Aroon and Ms Kulthida in court, with assistance from lawyer Phakin Jantira, based in Phuket Town.
“Today, I am still waiting for a letter from the court about what date the testimony will be,” Ms Kulthida told The Phuket News.
Her husband, Mr Aroon, left paralysed from the waist down after the bullet fired by Pornthep hit his spine, is well, but still recovering from recent surgery to clear an obstructed intestine, Ms Kulthida said.
“His condition is still stable. He went through surgery on his intestines in hospital last month and was just discharged last week,” she said.
“Doctors told me that because he cannot make any movements like us, his organs in digestive system do not work well, leading to the intestinal obstruction,” she explained.
“Doctors had to cut about 45cm of his intestines out and left a big scar on his stomach. Right now, he needs to lay down all the time. He cannot sit up. We need to raise up the bed, so that we can give him food,” Ms Kulthida added.
“He had to stop physical therapy after being discharged from the hospital. For his lower parts are still the same. He is still unable to walk and feel anything from his waist down,” she said.
“He can speak, but not like normal people because he still has a tube and hole on his neck,” she added.
Ms Kulthida express her thanks to all the people who have provided support for her and Mr Aroon, helping them with medical bills and getting by without any income while raising two young children.
“I received money donated from expats on the island, and I have spent that money on buying a patient bed and air mattress for Aroon,” she said, noting the valuable contribution that has made in caring for her husband.
Ms Kulthida offered The Phuket News to talk with Mr Aroon.
Asked how he was feeling at the time, he said shortly, “I feel a little bit better, but I feel exhausted.”