An inmate was killed and 13 others injured, including five guards, when a riot erupted at Songkhla Prison yesterday. About 200 inmates were reportedly angry about crowded conditions and strict rules for searches for drugs and cell-phones.
The riot erupted at 8am and ended in the afternoon, after officials agreed to consider the inmates' demand which included cell improvement and a call for Songkhla governor to shift prison chief Piratpon Wongwet, the latter of which officials claimed to be undoable.
Corrections Department chief Wittaya Suriyawong made an emergency trip to Songkhla to inspect the riot-hit 2,500-inmate prison. He said he ordered the facility to be closed and prohibit visitors. Fourth Army Region chief Lt Gen Prakan Cholayut, who went to control the crisis along with Corrections Department deputy chief Reungsak Suwari, said inmates burned mattresses and a visitor building in the compound as well as metal gates between Zone 1, 2 and 3. During the riot, 100 relatives of inmates protested in front of the jail - after hearing many inmates had died and been injured. Police said the convict who died was Chaiwut Saeheng.