From Andrew Drummond, Koh Phangan, Thailand
The man accused of shooting 22-year-old Stephen Ashton at a
New Year party on the Thai island of Koh Phangan apologised in court today and
said he never meant to hit a foreigner.
Ekkapan Kaewkla, 26, told a court in the neighbouring larger
island of Koh Samui that it was a mistake.

“I was aiming at someone else but the foreigner got in the way.”

He already had his finger pressured on the trigger.
Kaewkla was remanded in custody to prison in Koh Samui for
12 days.  It is not clear when the full
case will be heard. But under Thai law the trial should begin within 84 days.
Stephen Ashton
Even if the accused pleads guilty the court will have to
hear the testimony of all the witnesses.
If there are foreign witnesses and police have interviewed
foreigners they would need to testify before leaving the country.
The court has not accepted a plea from him for charges which
police said would be manslaughter and illegal possession of a gun.
Kaewkla handcuffed said ‘Sorry’ to the media and other
foreigners in the court.
Stephen Ashton’s family earlier issued statement saying that they
were devastated that he should be shot as an innocent bystander.
The Foreign Office has warned Britons to be especially
careful in the Samui Archipelego. This follows regular reports of rapes,
stabbings and the shooting of not only Ashton but a 28-year-old Briton on Koh Phangan last
August. He was hit in the leg and survived.


  1. So sad – “I was aiming at someone else but the foreigner got in the way.”

    So this is murder not manslaughter-you aim into a crowd of people on a beach – what do you expect to happen and to say the foreigner got in the way is unbelievaible, ok so it hits the intended target, that would be premeditated murder, so how is it a lesser charge if a innocent visitor to Thailand is shot dead.

    This totally stinks and is an insult to the young mans mother – By the sounds of things in uk press , Stephen Grandfather and father passed away in 2012, my heart goes out to his mum.

    And it looks like the police want to bargin the charge down to get the murder to admitt the charge to restore the thai image, its wrong , end of story but yet we sit back and continue to watch this sh*t happen, SORRY what does that mean, SORRY , yeah lets show how sorry we are , lets flee to the mountains, if caught lets say the guy got in the way and we are SORRY, no it does not cut it with me , and after many visits to Thailand this incident has definitely changed my mind about Thailand as this will continue if Thai gangs know they will get away with it – crazy , crazy , call themselves policemen

  2. "I was aiming at someone else"
    so that is manslaughter (or murder) PLUS attempted murder.

    I think murder charges re Stephen are appropriate – aiming and pulling the trigger means premeditated – of persons unspecified, until you see who hits the deck.

    Police should also find out who the someone else is & what that is all about. But now considering victim was only a f'lung, cops only duty now is to protect the Thai. ;-(

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