Body found on Patong Beach; Russian missing

PHUKET - Phuket police are trying to identify an ASEAN tourist whose body was discovered on Patong Beach at 6.20am yesterday.

"He had dark skin, was 150-160 centimetres tall and appeared to be 30-35 years old," said Major Jakkrapong Luang-aon of Patong Police. "He was fully clothed, but had no identification on him. We think he probably went swimming and drowned."

They suspect the man went for a dip after partying. The body was sent to Patong Hospital.

Patong authorities also received a report at 4am that an unnamed Russian went swimming at Patong Beach, but his compatriots couldn't find him.

In Bangkok, eight Indian tourists suffered minor injuries after falling down an escalator at the Phaya Thai Skytrain station. The three men and five women were reportedly fooling around on the escalator and tumbled down the steps at about 10am, according to Bangkok Mass Transit System.

In Pattaya, a video that went viral apparently showing a police officer slapping a Russian woman on December 29 has prompted a disciplinary probe of Pol Sr Sgt-Major Noppakrit Pornwattanathonkit, 40.

The suspect said he stopped the woman and her partner driving a motorcycle against the traffic and ordered the man to pay the fine. He then tried to get the rented motorbike towed away for fear it would disappear, but the woman resisted and tried to take a video.

Noppakrit insisted he tried to brush aside her camera phone and she ducked, so it might look like he slapped her.