One of the men who allegedly killed Australian travel agent Michelle Smith last week tried to snatch her bag so he could pay back a $9.40 dinner bill, a local news agency reports.
The tall Thai man was eating dinner on Wednesday night with a friend in Chalong, on the east coast of Phuket, when he told the waiter he could not afford to pay the bill but would be back with the money.
The man then hopped on a motorbike with his friend and allegedly rode to the west coast of the island where he tried to snatch Mrs Smith's bag, local police told Phuketwan.
When the man tried to grab Mrs Smith's bag, she refused to let go and so he stabbed her in the heart.
The 60-year-old was walking back to the Katathani Beach Resort in Kata Noi with nine other travel agents when the attack took place.
Her companion Tammee Lee, 42, was also wounded.
The dinner bill was never paid.
Police have arrested the alleged killer, 26-year-old Surasak "Boy" Suwannachot, and his getaway rider, 37-year-old Surin Taptong.
"They were charged with robbery and murder and they both confessed," said police Major General Chanasit Vatanavarangoon.
The pair is expected to take part in a media presentation and a re-enactment later today.
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