Man repeatedly stabbed as he saved girlfriend from sex attack gang in Thailand
A man from a village near Bath suffered multiple stab wounds as he defended his girlfriend from a sex attack by a gang in a Thailand beach resort.
Jack Cole, 21, from Peasedown St John, told from his hospital bed how the couple's dream holiday turned into a nightmare as a gang of Thai youths on motorcycles lay in wait for him and his girlfriend, student April Clifton.
Jack and April, also 21 and from Midsomer Norton, were attacked as they walked to a boat pier in Ao Nang, in southern Thailand.
“It was a calculated attack. They drove past us several times checking us out. We thought they had gone but they came out of the shadows and attacked April,” said Jack.
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“They laughed as they grabbed April as a mob. There were seven of them. Four men and three girls. I knocked the guy down who had grabbed April and then they crowded around me and I thought they were punching me.
“But it seems every punch was a stab. They were shouting in English 'Come on. Come on'. I saw that April had managed to run away to the safety of a local Dive Shop and I fell to the ground as the group ran away laughing," said Jack, who is being treated for stab wounds to his face, arms, chest and legs.
“I managed to stagger up to a foreigner who I begged for help and people came to staunch the flow of blood.
“There was no reason for the attack. We had never seen these people before. They appeared to be driving in a gang looking for foreign victims. They made no attempt to take my wallet. They were just interested in April.”
A Briton, who runs the dive shop in Ao Nang, put a post about the attack on an expat forum in Thailand.
He said: "In Ao Nang. I fear that another tourist death is imminent. Gangs of teenage kids, armed with knifes and machetes roam the roads like something out of a Hollywood horror movie. WTF is wrong with this place!
He added: " I accompanied them to the Krabi hospital where I witnessed the same old story. You pay or no treatment.
“The resort where they were staying kindly brought his and hers passports, money and the lifesaving Insurance."
Jack lives in Bristol and works as a recruitment officer for Office Angels in the city.
April, who went to Norton Hill School, has finished her studies and was planning to look for a job after returning from their dream holiday.
The couple had been staying at the luxury Centara Grand Beach Resort Hotel and were walking to the Nopprarat Thara pier to catch a speedboat to their resort in neighbouring Plai Plong Bay.
April’s father has flown out to be with his daughter, who Jack says is scared to go out alone. The British Embassy is providing full consular assistance from their office in Phuket.
Three of the seven suspects are being held by Krabi Provincial Police. Another four are being hunted in the Nong Talay area of Krabi.
Ao Nang has been the scene of several attacks on tourists this year. Three months ago a 19-year-old Dutch model was raped. Police arrested her alleged attacker, but he was given bail immediately.
Her Dutch father subsequently posted a music video entitled "Evil Man of Krabi" attacking the Thai justice system.