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Fugitive Australian Guido James Eglitis (centre) poses for a photo with officials last week before being deported to Thailand. Photo supplied
Fugitive Australian Guido James Eglitis (centre) poses for a photo with officials last week before being deported to Thailand. Photo supplied

Wanted Australian released from prison and deported

An Australian man, wanted by police in his native country on kidnapping and torture charges, was released from Siem Reap provincial prison and deported to Thailand last week and has since been pictured enjoying the nightlife in Bangkok.

Accompanied by immigration officials to the departure gate at Siem Reap International Airport, Guido James Eglitis, 70, flew to Thailand at 9:30pm on October 29, hours after completing his sentence and being released from custody, Siem Reap Immigration Police chief Chea Kimsan said yesterday.

Eglitis was arrested in October 2015 and subsequently convicted of assaulting UK national David Scotcher during a home invasion in Siem Reap. At the time of his arrest, it emerged that Eglitis had also been charged in Queensland for the 2007 abduction and torture of a businessman in Brisbane, but had reportedly skipped on bail.

In the wake of his capture, Queensland police told the Post they were “making enquiries into the possible extradition” of a 68-year-old suspect in the kidnapping case, in which Eglitis allegedly posed as an Australia Federal Police officer.

Kimsan said that although Australian police had visited Eglitis, no extradition request was lodged.

“I asked them about [the case in Australia], however they did not have any official documents related to what he had done in Australia, so we could not do anything,” Kimsan said.

Though he was detained just over a year ago, Kimsan said the provincial court had determined Eglitis’s 14-month sentence was complete. Court officials were unreachable yesterday.

“After he received his punishment by the law . . . he can go anywhere, but not Cambodia,” Kimsan said, adding that Eglitis was expelled under Article 34 of Cambodia’s Law on Immigration.

Brett Hastie, a New Zealand man arrested alongside Eglitis, was released without charge after authorities determined Eglitis had posed as an Australian police officer in enlisting his help to “arrest” Scotcher, Kimsan said.

Queensland Police’s media team did not respond by press time yesterday.

The Brisbane Times yesterday published photos of Eglitis at a bar in Bangkok on Monday taken by witnesses who had seen him drinking in the area.

The site said Eglitis had also been sentenced to four years’ prison in the US on fraud charges in 1988.

The fugitive has also been linked to the suspicious death of Canadian journalist Dave Walker, whose decomposed body was discovered in the Angkor archaeological park in 2014.

According to Walker’s friends and family, Eglitis misrepresented himself as an investigator probing Walker’s death on behalf of Cambodian, US, Australian and Canadian governments.

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