By Preewadi Wichaiprasit
They then allegedly disposed of the victim’s body in a roadside forest in Chon Buri’s Ban Bueng district.
Chon Buri police chief Pol Maj-General Nanthachat Supamongkol announced their arrest at a press conference on Monday.
The body of Jirapat Sattayapan, 56, was found with his hands and legs tied in the forest in Tambon Khlong Kiew, while his shotgun, pistol and mobile phone were missing.
A police investigation led to arrest warrants being issued for five suspects: Karun Urak, 35, Narasak Pongboonchan, 31, Arkhom Salieepol, 35, Adirek Urak, 33, and Chucheep Neungchamnong, 48.
The five men were initially charged with colluding in the premeditated murder and colluding in robbery, the police chief said.
The police investigation found that Jirapat had been beaten to death after approaching the robbers with his guns on display in an effort to scare them away from the factory.
Despite his warning, they did not leave the premises and remained in hiding until they got the chance to fatally attack him, before disposing of his body and fleeing the scene with his guns and phone, Nanthachat said.
He added that the suspects had confessed to their crime, and were later brought to perform a re-enactment.
The victim’s daughter, Jindarat, said she suspected that the culprits might have held a grudge against her father judging from the overkill they had used, as he had previously made clear his intention ”to punish thieves” at the plant, most of whom were jobless drug addicts.
She suggested that a decoy known to her father could have been used in the robbery, because if there had not been any familiar faces, he would have just shot at the intruders before they could attack him, Nanthachat said.