Thai cops get fresh evidence of Burmese suspect in tourists' murder

Thai cops get fresh evidence of Burmese suspect in tourists' murder

Thai police have obtained fresh clues about a Thai man and a Burmese migrant worker suspected of killing two British tourists on Koh Tao early last Monday, said a police source 

Surat Thani provincial police chief Pol Maj-Gen Kiattipong Khaosam-ang yesterday held a meeting of investigators responsible for handling the murder case.  

The source said police have made considerable progress in their investigation, ruling out issues that had nothing to do with the murder and narrowing the scope of their inquiry.

The source said investigators have obtained fresh clues about two suspects — a Thai man and a Burmese migrant worker. The Thai police will link the new information with evidence which they had previously gathered.

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Pol Maj-Gen Kiattipong  from the Thai police department said yesterday [21 September] that they have managed to find an Asian-looking man who was captured by a security camera not far from the crime scene.

The man, whose identity has been withheld, has now been held for questioning, Pol Maj Gen Kiattipong said, adding that the man worked at a night entertainment venue.

In the video footage, captured by a camera installed at AC Bar, where Hannah Witheridge, 23, and David Miller, 24, had been seen, the man can be seen walking back and forth near the crime scene.

The man was seen about 4am wearing a pair of shorts walking toward Jor Por Ror cape — the same route Miller and Witheridge took before they were found dead.

The same man returned about 50 minutes later, running back in a suspicious manner, said Pol Maj Gen Kiattipong in previous interviews.

A team of 10 forensic officers yesterday took a boat out to sea to collect DNA samples of fishermen as part of the probe into the murders.

More than 50 Thai marine police officers were also sent to inspect fishing boats near Koh Tao and check the records of migrant workers who are fishing crew, as well as examine ferries carrying tourists to hunt for any suspects.

Thai officials on Koh Tao were also installing more lighting in “black spots” in a bid to reduce crime.

Pol Col Chaisak Uaekrissadathikarn, deputy chief of the Office of Police Forensic Science Region 8, in Thailand, said forensic officers were stepping up efforts to collect DNA samples of as many people as possible on Koh Tao to send to the Office of the Police Forensic Science in Bangkok.

 

This article was originally published in the Bangkok Post on 22 September 2014

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