Wael Zureikat (hooded) being question by Thai police Image Credit: Bangkok Post

Highlights

  • Father, 52, detained at Suvarnabhumi airport around 3am on Tuesday as he was about to board a flight back to Jordan
  • Police said there were no bruises on the body and the boy was believed to have died two to three days earlier.
  • The body was sent to Bang Lamung Hospital
  • Suspect’s 24-year-old wife was not named by police

Manama: A Jordanian father has been charged in Thailand with premeditated murder after his 18-month-old son was found dead, his legs tied to a collapsible stroller, floating in the sea off South Pattaya.

The body was found floating near Laem Bali Hai on Monday evening after a speedboat driver reported it at about 5pm, Pattaya tourist police said.

Police said there were no bruises on the body and the boy was believed to have died two to three days earlier. The body was sent to Bang Lamung Hospital.

Thai police investigating the incident. Image Credit: The Nation

Wael Nabil Salman Zureikat, 52, was detained at Suvarnabhumi airport around 3am on Tuesday as he was about to board a flight back to Jordan, the Bangkok Post reported.

“Immigration officials noticed that he was acting suspiciously while trying to get a flight out of Thailand. So, we detained him for questioning,” Immigration Bureau chief Pol Lt-General Surachate Hakparn said.

Questioned

The suspect was taken back to Pattaya where he was questioned overnight before making the confession that in a fit of anger, he took his son to Laem Bali Hai pier on Friday night, tied his legs to the stroller and pushed it into the sea, saying that he was angry his wife paid no attention to their son.

“He said he felt stressed out and vengeful when his much younger wife had left him to take care of their baby alone during the couple’s trip to Thailand,” Hakparn said.

He claimed that whenever he complained, she became upset, resulting in quarrels between the spouses.

Police said that on March 10, a Jordanian woman filed a complaint that her young son was missing and said she suspected her husband had taken him. Image Credit: The Nation

“He killed his son, while his wife knew nothing of it,” Pol Lt-Colonel Piyapong Ainsarn, an inspector in Pattaya’s tourist police, was quoted as saying by Thai media.

Worried

“He [said he] was worried he may not have had enough money to raise his child. His wife is now grieving. She had never imagined that her husband would kill their own child in such a cold-blooded manner.”

At a media conference, Hakparn said a Jordanian woman on March 10 filed a complaint that her young son was missing and said she suspected her husband had taken him.

The Thai police did not name the suspect’s wife, but said she was 24 years old.

In Amman, an official at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it was following through its diplomats in the region the murder by drowning of a Jordanian baby on a trip with his parents.

The official said it was coordinating with the competent authorities in Jordan and Thailand to uncover all details about the incident.

The baby will be buried in Thailand based on a request from his family, the official added.