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One shot dead after fight

 A member of an illegal money-lending gang was killed in a shooting that occurred early on Sunday morning in That Phanom district of this northeastern border province, police said.

Pol Capt Nathapol Phosarn, a That Phanom police duty officer, said the shooting occurred on the road to the customs office in That Phanom district town, and was reported to him at about 5.30am.

Police, rescuers and a doctor from That Phanom Crown Prince Hospital found Tossapol Panlam, 20, from Buri Ram province, lying dead on the pavement. He had been shot in the left side of the rib cage.

Also found at the scene was his colleague, Pittaya Klinkachorn, 33, from Uthai Thani province, who sustained injuries to the head and other parts of the body.

However, the injuries were from another incident which happened earlier in the night, the officer said.

Pol Col Thawil Khamket, the That Phanom police chief, said the police learned from an investigation that Tossapol and Mr Pittaya, who were members of an illegal money lending gang, had earlier had a quarrel with a group of local youngsters while drinking at a liquor shop in the district town.

A fight broke out between the two sides and Mr Pittaya was injured. Tossapol took Mr Pittaya to the That Phanom Crown Prince Hospital for treatment.

At about 5.30am, while they were returning home on a motorcycle driven by Tossapol, they were ambushed by a group of about 10 young men who arrived on motorcycles.

One of the men pulled out a gun and fired four shots. One of the shots hit Tossapol in the rib cage, killing him on the spot.

The group fled on the motorcycles after the attack.

Police were investigating the incident and examining footage from security cameras in the area to establish the identity of the attackers.

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