Police Visit Home of Thai Student Arrested in Pakistani Airport

Prasert Suthok (L), father of Faruk Suthok, talks to police officers from Special Branch Police at his home in Krabi province, 11 June 2015

KRABI — Thai police visited the home of one of the five Thai students who were arrested in Pakistan for allegedly trying to smuggle a firearm and ammunition onto a plane.

Prasert Suthok, 46, told Khaosod that police officers from the Special Branch department arrived at his home in the southern province of Krabi at around noon today. His son, Faruk Suthok, is one of the five students who were detained at the Lahore airport on 8 June before boarding a Thai Airways flight bound for Bangkok.

Sek Wannamethee, a spokesperson of the Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said the five students were hiding separate pieces of a 9 mm. handgun, its magazine, and some ammunition, according to Pakistani authorities. 

Prasert said the officers asked him about Faruk's background and education records, but did not file any charges.

According to Prasert, Faruk graduated from an Islamic high school in Songkhla province and continued his study at another Islamic school in Krabi. Faruk was later sent to a madras in Pakistan, where he has been studying for two years, Prasert said, adding that the school pays for his studies. 

He told reporters that he last heard from Faruk on the night of 8 June, when his son told him that he was about to board a plane to Bangkok.

"Then a cleric at the [religious school] in Krabi told me that he was arrested for firearm charges with his friends at the airport in Lahore," Prasert said. "My family was shocked."

Prasert insisted that his son is a well-behaved student who is passionate about Islam and has no links to any terror group.

"I don't believe my son would carry any weapon, and I don't believe he was a part of any terrorist group,” Prasert said. “This matter is really suspicious. My son is a well-behaved person. He has always been living his life under religious principles. He never made his parents worried or upset. That's why he chose to do religious studies, so that he can come back to teach people in his village." 

Faruk's mother, Amphorn Suthok, also said her son would never get involved in any terror network. 

"I am really worried about my son," Amphorn said, "I'd like to ask the Thai government to help him and bring him back to Thailand safely." 


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