One of two Russians who robbed and extorted money from a compatriot instead of exchanging currency has been arrested at Phuket airport while trying to leave Thailand.

At Phuket airport, immigration officials arrested a Russian man with Swedish citizenship who robbed and extorted money from a Russian woman while trying to leave the country, Phuket News reported, citing Immigration Bureau Commissioner Lt Gen Itthipol Itthisarnronnachai.

The suspect in the robbery of the compatriot, a 25-year-old Russian national named Alexander, who also holds Swedish citizenship, was arrested by immigration police at Phuket International Airport while trying to fly out of the country. The detainee has been handed over to Chalong Police Station interrogators for prosecution, said Immigration Bureau Commissioner Lieutenant-General Itthipol Itthisarnnachai.

Alexander, a Russian man, is suspected of robbing and extorting a 23-year-old Russian national named Diera, who filed a report with Chalong police. The woman said she had arranged via messenger Telegram to meet Alexander at a villa in Chalong, Phuket, at 11 pm on 8 May to exchange 25,000 baht in cash for $700 in cryptocurrency.

Immigration arrested a Russian with Swedish citizenship who robbed and extorted money from a Russian woman at Phuket airport.

While Dheera was talking to Alexander at the meeting, a second Russian suspect entered the premises without the woman’s knowledge. The second man then assisted Alexander in grabbing Diera and tying her hands and feet. The woman put a bag over her head and took her phone away, demanding that the rest of the money be transferred.

After Diera stated that there was no more money, Alexander started beating the woman, demanding the password to the smartphone. After getting what he wanted and ensuring that there was indeed no money left in Diera’s account, Alexander forced the woman to contact a friend who lived in the next room so the neighbour could bring cash from her room.

Alexander and the second Russian suspect took 2,000 US dollars and 6,000 baht from Diera, totalling 104,546 baht. When the woman was released, Diera immediately filed a crime report at Chalong Police Station to bring both men to justice.

Chalong Police immediately informed Phuket Immigration Police, and when Alexander was about to fly to Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, immigration officers found the suspect’s name on the passenger list and immediately arrested him on a charge of robbery in the night (committing an offence in the night is an aggravating circumstance – ed.).

As the second suspect has managed to leave the country, officials will gather evidence and present it to interrogators to ask the Phuket Provincial Court to issue an arrest warrant and prosecute the Russian suspect.

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