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  1. #1
    FarangRed
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    American Fanelli sentenced to 10 years for Phuket bar girl murder

    American Fanelli sentenced to 10 years for Phuket bar girl murder
    Phuket Gazette – Thursday, November 3, 2011 4:30:00 PM
    Phuket expat Ronald Fanelli was sentenced to 10 years in prison for murdering bar girl Wanphen Pienjai and stuffing her body into a suitcase.

    Murder victim Wanphen Pienjai had a young daughter at the time of her murder.

    PHUKET: American Ronald “Mad Yank” Fanelli has been sentenced to 10 years and three months imprisonment for the stabbing murder of bar hostess Wanphen Pienjai last year.

    Phuket Provincial Prison Director Rapin Nichanon today confirmed that the court’s decision was handed down on Tuesday.

    The sentence will be reduced by the 471 days Fanelli has already been detained, he added.

    Fanelli has the right to appeal the decision, although details of the conditions of an appeal have yet to be announced.

    “Under policy, Phuket Prison accommodates prisoners serving sentences up to 15 years, so he can stay here if chooses to.

    “However, he has the right to contact his embassy and apply to be transferred to another prison, such as Klong Prem Prison in Bangkok, which would be more convenient for him if he wants to stay in regular contact with embassy officials,” Chief Rapin said.

    “He returned from Suan Saranrom Hospital in Surat Thani only a few days ago. This was the second time he was sent there for psychiatric treatment. The first time he spent many months receiving treatment there,” he added.

    In March this year, Fanelli told the Phuket Gazette in an exclusive interview that conditions at the overcrowded Phuket Prison were making him ill.

    Phuket Prison is currently home to nearly 1,600 prisoners. The facility was originally designed to house about 1,000 inmates.

    During the interview, Fanelli said that overcrowding at the prison had led to a lack of cleanliness that caused him to contract scabies and other infections.

    He added that he continued to suffer from “the stress of having to watch out for my own physical safety as well as that of my friends who are weaker than me.”

    At a press conference in July last year, Fanelli confessed to killing Miss Pienjai by stabbing her, but said it was an “accident”.

    Presented by police at the same press conference were items to be used as evidence to show that Fanelli disposed of Miss Pienjai’s body by stuffing it into a large suitcase – posthumously breaking both of her legs.

    He carried the suitcase by motorbike and dumped it in a remote part of Phuket's Wichit sub-district, several kilometers from his rented home.

    Fanelli, who was a professional poker player, earned the name “Mad Yank” among fellow players for his often boisterous demeanor.

    Columnist Victoria Coren wrote an article in the British newspaper The Guardian, about her friendship with Fanelli when he was participating in poker competitions.

    To see video of Ronald Fanelli confessing to the killing of Ms Pienjai, click .

  2. #2
    FarangRed
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    Phuket Prosecutor may appeal Fanelli sentence
    Phuket Gazette – Saturday, November 12, 2011 12:51:43 PM
    Former US Marine Ronald Fanelli was sentenced to 10 years in prison for murdering Wanphen Pienjai (inset) and stuffing her body into a suitcase.

    Wanphen Pienjai

    PHUKET: The Phuket Attorney General’s Office is considering filing an appeal over the sentence of 10 years and three months imprisonment handed down to former US Marine Ronald Fanelli for the stabbing murder of bar hostess Wanphen Pienjai last year.

    Fanelli was formally handed down a sentence of 20 years imprisonment for murder and another six months in jail for hiding the body, Phuket Provincial Deputy Chief Public Prosecutor Permgiart Bumrung, the lead prosecutor in the case, told the Phuket Gazette.

    “The sentence was halved to 10 years and three months because he confessed,” he explained.

    During the trial, the court heard that Fanelli confessed to killing Miss Pienjai by stabbing her, but said it was an “accident”.

    Police presented evidence to show that Fanelli disposed of Miss Pienjai’s body by stuffing it into a large suitcase – posthumously breaking both of her legs so he could fold them into the luggage.

    “He kept the body in the room for two days before disposing of it,” said Mr Permgiart.

    Fanelli carried the suitcase by motorbike to a remote part of Wichit. He dumped the suitcase several kilometers from his rented home, where he was later arrested, the court heard.

    Prosecutor Permgiart said Fanelli has until December 1 to appeal the verdict. “We are also considering filing an appeal over the reduced sentence because 10 years is not a long sentence for a case like this,” Mr Permgiat said.

    The private lawyer who defended Fanelli in the case, who asked not to be named, on Monday said, “I have yet to discuss [an appeal] with my client. I am also waiting for US embassy officials to discuss what they would do like to do further with the case…

    “As for whether or not we will file an appeal, that all depends on my client,” she added.

    Prosecutor Permgiat explained that the US embassy had filed a letter to the court through the defense lawyer. “The US embassy explained in the letter that Fanelli is a former Marine who served in Afghanistan for several years. He killed many people during his tour of duty, and this could well have affected his behavior,” he said.

    Phuket Provincial Prison Director Rapin Nichanon revealed that the reduced sentence will be further reduced by the 471 days that Fanelli has served in detention.

    “As Phuket Prison accommodates prisoners serving sentences up to 15 years, he can stay here if chooses to,” Chief Rapin said.

    “However, he has the right to contact his embassy and ask to be transferred to another prison, such as Klong Prem Prison in Bangkok, which would be more convenient for him if he wants to stay in regular contact with embassy officials,” he added.

  3. #3
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    Marmite the Dog's Avatar
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    10 years seems a bit lenient.

  4. #4
    Member IceSpike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FarangRed
    “Under policy, Phuket Prison accommodates prisoners serving sentences up to 15 years, so he can stay here if chooses to. “However, he has the right to contact his embassy and apply to be transferred to another prison, such as Klong Prem Prison in Bangkok, which would be more convenient for him if he wants to stay in regular contact with embassy officials,” Chief Rapin said.
    A convicted murderer has rights?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceSpike View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by FarangRed
    “Under policy, Phuket Prison accommodates prisoners serving sentences up to 15 years, so he can stay here if chooses to. “However, he has the right to contact his embassy and apply to be transferred to another prison, such as Klong Prem Prison in Bangkok, which would be more convenient for him if he wants to stay in regular contact with embassy officials,” Chief Rapin said.
    A convicted murderer has rights?
    Yeah: the right to fishead soup, the right to be bummed and the right to contract hep A.

  6. #6
    sabaii sabaii
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    Does 10 years mean 10 years or will he get time off for good behaviour

    Seems very lenient in a country that upholds the Death Penalty for drugs

    Life is cheap here

  7. #7
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    ^or dropping litter.

  8. #8
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    it's gonna be a long 10 years and 3 months - 471 days.
    unless he can escape
    or transferred to a prison in the usa.

  9. #9
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    It should be a life sentance for this psychopath. He ended Khun Wanphens life for no reason, at the same time ruined her childs future too. Bastard.

  10. #10
    Balls to Monty
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    I did not understand from the reports how long it took the police to track him down. Seems strange that he did not take the opportunity to leave the country. Even stranger that he did not even worry about leaving the island. Taking the body in a suitcase on a motorbike? Surely it would be worth hiring a car then you could take the body somewhere really remote. Anyway RIP to the girl.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by yortyiam View Post
    It should be a life sentance for this psychopath. He ended Khun Wanphens life for no reason, at the same time ruined her childs future too. Bastard.
    Should be death not ten years minus 471 days.

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