Bangkok, August 11 2010
Hind smiling happily as his Thai wife in a swirly shirt and 99% pure
gold pendant cheekily makes a 'V' sign behind his head.
Months later Hind, 68, from Cheshunt, Herts, who was terminally ill
with throat cancer and constriction of the arteries to his brain, was
clubbed to death on his wife's orders, say police.
'She told me she could not be bothered to wait until he died naturally,' said a close relative.
Hind is the latest victim in a series of killings by Thai wives who can't wait to get their hands on their inheritance.
Hind was beaten to death with a piece of wood in the couples' luxury
retirement home. He had told her he was leaving her Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â£200,000, the house,
and a bar business.
Ironically the latest killing happened in Hua Hin, 150 miles south of
Bangkok. This was the home of Chippenham gentleman farmer, Toby
Charnaud, who was beaten to death by his estranged wife's relatives in
2006, and whose body was then barbecued and fed to the tigers in Kaeng
Krajan national park north of Hua Hin.
The murder of Toby Charnaud reported in the Daily Mail
Today Hind's wife Bunnag, 38, nicknamed 'Namfon' or 'Falling Rain' -
was remanded in custody at the provincial capital of Prachuap Kiri Khan
on a charge of 'conspiracy to murder' on July 27th.
Also charged was her lover Tanakorn. Her brother Pomgrit, 26, who
police say actually carried out of the killing at Hyde's retirement home
in Khao Noi village, Hua Hin, is on the run.
Police in Hua Hin said that the motive was purely his assets
Police Commander Vichien Tantawiriat said: 'The wife claimed that her
husband beat her and was verbally abusive to her. But we do not
believe her story as he was terminally ill. We believe the only motive
was to get his cash quicker.'
The police story is backed up by a cousin of 'Namfon' who worked at her bar.
Said Benjawong Singtuen, 32, from Kamphaeng Phet province said:'I
worked at the bar when Namfon told me she could not wait for Raymond to
die. She said he had promised her 10 million baht and the business and
bar were in her name. She continually asked him to buy her gold.'
'She had a series of other lovers who were both Thai and foreigners and like Raymond she met them all in a bar.
'She had lived in England with Raymond who was a very sweet man. But
she could not wait to get him back to Thailand. I left her bar. I could
not stand her any more. He was very ill. He was dying anyway. This was
'Her family, who come from Nakhon Sawan, are very ashamed and have gone into hiding.'
Another Briton who met the same fate and Hyde and Charnaud was Ian Beeston, 69, a retired design engineer.
Before he died in 2008 he wrote a letter to his lawyers saying: 'It is only a matter of time now. I fear for my life.'
He knew his wife Wanna, 42, was planning to kill him at their
Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â£250,000 palatial home in the North Eastern Thai province of Roi-Et ,and
he a sat alone at home waiting to defend himself with a stun gun.
But he was beaten in his sleep by his wife's lover Somchit. Both were later charged with murder.
Thai wives seem happy to take the risk of being caught. Figures show
that people charged with murder in Thailand can be out of prison in four
years if they are contrite and become model prisoners.
The British Embassy in Bangkok processes on average 70 marriages a week mainly between older Britons with young Thai wives.
CORRECTION: In earlier versions of this sorry Raymond Hind was referred to as Raymond Hyde.