2 Thais on trial over death of Australian tourist

AP News
|
Posted: Aug 06, 2012 2:04 AM
2 Thais on trial over death of Australian tourist

PHUKET, Thailand (AP) — The trial of two Thai men charged with killing an Australian travel agent has opened on the island of Phuket.

Michelle Elizabeth Smith was walking near her hotel on June 20 when two men on a motorcycle tried to grab her bag and then stabbed her when she resisted. The 60-year-old walked away from the attack but collapsed and died shortly afterward.

Surasak Suwannachote and Surin Tabthong were arrested within days after a huge manhunt.

On their way to court Monday, the 26-yeard-old Surasak told reporters: "I confess" to the crime. He is accused of stabbing Smith.

The 37-year-old Surin is accused of driving the motorcycle. He denied the charges Monday despite having confessed to the killing earlier.

Both men could face the death penalty if convicted.