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Frenchman needed brain surgery after brutal bashing

Police have arrested 11 suspects, most of them minors, for assaulting and seriously injuring a French tourist, in the seaside town of Hua Hin.

Simonivet Pou, 26, was attacked in one of the town's beer bar zones on New Year's Day after he tried to help another foreigner in a street brawl. The victim needed brain surgery.

"We arrested the suspects and they have confessed to their crime," Prachuap Khiri Khan police chief Maj General Tanet Suntornsuk said yesterday.

He said nine of the suspects were between 15 and 17 years old, while one was 20, and another, a soldier.

The suspects told police that a drunken foreigner had offended them, so they attacked him. Pou then tried to intervene in the incident and ended up being assaulted himself.

"We have charged them with physical assault," Tanet said.

Following the attack, Pou was rushed to Hua Hin Hospital where he underwent brain surgery. He was then transferred to the Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital in Bangkok after his condition improved.

Pasitta Intaphan, director of the Tourism Authority of Thailand's Prachuap Khiri Kran branch condemned the attack, saying it should never have happened.

"We will raise the issue with the Hua Hin/Cha Am Tourism Association. Relevant authorities need to explore measures that efficiently prevent such problem and ensure tourists' safety," she said.


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