Thai girlfriend suspected of murdering Italian lover found hiding in tree

Left: Rujira Iam-lamai, 38, was found hiding in a longan tree at the border between Kamphaeng Phet and Tak provinces. Screengrab: Manager Online. Right: A file photo of Rujira and her French boyfriend Amaury Rigaud, 34. Photo: Facebook

Police have caught the Thai woman wanted for the murder of her Italian lover today, in the same jungle her French boyfriend and alleged murder accomplice was caught last night.

Around 11am, Rujira Iam-lamai, 38, was found hiding in a longan tree at the border between Kamphaeng Phet and Tak provinces, about one kilometer from the spot where police caught Amaury Rigaud, 34, last night.

Khaosod reported the woman appeared exhausted and was holding a bag of food in her hands when authorities found her.

Contrary to the statement from her French boyfriend, who has denied charges and accused Rujira and her Thai ex-boyfriend of committing the murder, Rujira said that it was the Frenchman who murdered the 61-year-old Italian, Giuseppe De Stefani, who was found dead on Jan. 19 in Phichit province.

“She [Rujira] said Amaury Rigaud was the person who killed the victim,” Pol. Col. Chaisatien Maneechak, commander of Bueng Narang police told reporters.

Rujira said she only drove the getaway car.

In a Channel 8 broadcast, police said Rigaud was a soldier for five years, and, therefore, was an expert at surviving in the woods.

“The team has been tracking her down since last night, and she was lost in the woods because she was not familiar in the area. She was also seen buying food from locals,” Pol. Col. Chaisatien said.

Police are expected to release further details soon.

“We’d like some time to investigate and look at the forensic evidence.”


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