Couple get suspended jail term for providing shelter for southern insurgent

A man and his wife, who provided shelter for a suspected insurgent wanted under five arrest warrants, have been each sentenced to three months in jail, suspended for two years, according to Internal Security Operations Command Region 4 spokesman Col Pramote Prom-in.

Suedi Maham and his wife Sitipatimo Sengkajari were arrested on June 30 when a combined police and military team surrounded their house in Yala’s Raman district on being informed that Lukman Mading, 29, a suspected insurgent who was wanted under five arrest warrants on various charges including terrorism and murder attempts, was hiding there.

While the authorities were approaching the house, Lukman allegedly opened fire at them and an exchange of fire ensued.  Lukman was killed in the clash.  A gun and some ammunition were recovered from his body.

Col Pramote told a press conference today (July 8) that Suedi Maham and Sitipatimo confessed that they were united front members of a southern insurgent group.  Their duties were to collect a monthly cash contribution from other members to the group and provide shelter for insurgents who had conducted violent incidents. They said Lukman had stayed in their house twice.

The couple were indicted in the Yala Court. The court on Friday (July 7) sentenced each of them to a jail term, which was reduced to three months because they gave useful information, and a fine of 10,000 baht.  The jail sentence was suspended for two years.

Col Pramote said this case serves as a warning that people should not provide shelter for anyone wanted under an arrest warrant to hide in their houses otherwise they could face a jail term of up to two years and a fine of not exceeding 40,000 baht.

A forensic examination of the gun seized from Lukman revealed that the weapon had been used in five violent incidents during 2012-2016, he said.