Search for Thai woman turns murder investigation, suicide bid after German boyfriend accused

Pischa Nampadung. Photo: The Phuket News
Pischa Nampadung. Photo: The Phuket News

Over the holiday weekend, a search for a 35-year-old Thai woman, who had not been seen since June 30, took a darker turn.

Pischa Nampadung, a beautician at a Phuket salon, was last seen fighting with her with German boyfriend, Nico Papke, 35, at her rented room near the Rawai beachfront.

After she wasn’t seen for a few days and did not turn up for work, her uncle, Lamduan Sridonsai, 62, filed a missing person report on July 6.

On Saturday, her body was found in the Phuket jungle wrapped in blankets with a stuffed animal and bound with packing tape. She was dressed in black shorts and a black T-shirt and was decomposed enough to make further observation difficult. Her body was removed and taken for further medical examination.

The blanket her body was wrapped in and the stuffed animal that accompanied it.

Papke is the prime suspect for the murder of Pischa.

On Sunday evening, Papke made an attempt on his life. He took his desperate action just as police were moving in to arrest him at his rented home in Rawai. He remains in the hospital and is not yet fit to be questioned by police.

He cut his throat with a box cutter. He was taken to Vachira Phuket Hospital in Phuket Town, where he is being watched by both police and medical staff. He is conscious, but is unable to respond to questions, police said.

Papke as he was taken to the hospital.

On Monday, officers searched a car rented by Papke and found bloodstains inside the vehicle. They sent samples from the stains to a lab to see if the bodily fluid belonged to his murdered girlfriend. They also collected fingerprints from the car and searched Papke’s house for evidence.

They believe that the white Toyota Vios was used to dispose of Pischa’s body.

Her remains have been sent to the Forensic Institute of Police Science in Surat Thani to determine the exact cause of death. The results of the autopsy will be included as evidence in the case.

Pischa’s older sister, Bang-Earn Ornkorat, 40, gave a statement to police. She said, “I know that my sister has been with Papke for three to four months, but I do not know exactly how she got to know him, because my sister did not tell me the details. She worked as a beautician at a salon in Chalong. She has one child, who lives in Kamphaeng Phet province. Pischa worked to help send money back for the child and for our mother. I just recently met Papke. To my knowledge he owns of a fitness center in Rawai. He was quiet and kept to himself, was very introverted. I did not think that he would be violent toward my sister. If it is proven that he is the murderer, we want him to be prosecuted by law,” she added.

Papke’s immigration history showed he entered Thailand for the first time on June 21, 2016, with a 60-day tourist visa. He departed on Sept. 19, 2016, before returning for the second time on June 20, 2017 and has since worked a fitness trainer in Rawai.

Story: The Phuket News



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