Charles Jones, 56, of Westport, New Zealand, and a president of the World Croquet Federation, was on his way home from a world croquet tournament in London (via a stopover in Thailand to promote croquet), but was robbed and murdered in his hotel apartment in Pattaya (roughly an hour from Bangkok). Friends found his body when he failed to return from breakfast on August 23.
COMMENT: Jones' assailants stole his cellphone and computer before leaving. Reportedly, he also refused to give them the combination to a safe in the apartment, which might well have been a motivation for the homicide.
One reason that Jones was in Pattaya was to cultivate the opening of the city's first croquet club. He was known for establishing croquet clubs in countries where they did not exist and was a distinguished recipient of the Queen's Service Medal for his contribution to croquet.
Unfortunately, Thailand, where I served for a number of years as the US Embassy's senior security officer, has grown much more violent than when I was there. As all countries continue to face negative economic ramifications, crime seems to be rising everywhere, but particularly in Thailand, which is a hub for foreign tourists in large numbers. Those that have are forced to relinquish their possessions and money; those that don't improve their situation. The incidence of rape and sexual assault is also very high in Thailand.
I wrote my book, STAYING SAFE ABROAD: TRAVELING, WORKING AND LIVING IN A POST-9/11 WORLD, to prevent international crime. To ensure that you and those traveling with you have a safe trip abroad, I would suggest purchasing the book if you don't have access to professional "Staying Safe Abroad" training. The book can be ordered through my website: http://www.sbrisksolutions.com.
If it is true that Mr. Jones refused to open his apartment safe for his assailants, that might well have been a factor in his death. I strongly recommend AGAINST resisting a robbery. Criminals simply want what they came after; if you give it to them, rarely is the victim seriously harmed. Admittedly, there are exceptions, albeit few. Resistance can be effective against rape, which is the topic for another discussion. Actually, pages 230-250 in my book address rape abroad, including resistance.