A British couple and their son were savagely attacked during a family vacation in Thailand in the latest blow to the country's image as a welcoming tourist paradise. Police said Thursday they have arrested the four suspected attackers.
A video of the attack, which was captured by overhead security cameras and posted this week on social media, has stirred shock and outrage over its brutality and the ages of the victims, a 65-year-old woman and 68-year-old man from Scotland and their 43-year-old son. The attack is the latest act of violence against tourists in the Southeast Asian country.
In the video the family is seen walking down a crowded street in the beach town of Hua Hin on the evening of April 13, amid festivities for the Thai New Year.
An altercation breaks out with a group of men on the street who punch all three in the face, kick their bodies and stomp on their faces in an attack that lasts about 2 minutes.
Police Col. Chaiyakorn Sriladecho said it started after "the son accidentally bumped into one of the Thai men.''
The attack stops only when all three victims are seen lying apparently unconscious on the ground. As the Thai gang disappears, bystanders come to their aid.
"We have now arrested all four suspects,'' Chaiyakorn said. Three of the men were arrested within days of the incident and the fourth on Thursday, he said, identifying them as in their 20s and 30s.
"The men say they are sorry and that they wouldn't have done this if they weren't drunk,'' he said.
The father and son suffered head injuries requiring stitches, Chaiyakorn said. The mother received serious eye and head injuries that caused a buildup of fluid in the brain and required an operation, he said.
In March, four French tourists were assaulted on the island of Koh Kut as they walked to dinner. They included a mother and daughter who were both raped.
Two British backpackers were murdered on the island of Koh Tao in 2014. Autopsies showed the couple, a young man and woman, had been severely beaten and the woman raped. Two Myanmar migrants were convicted of the crime based on DNA evidence that rights groups say was questionable.