UPDATE: Tangmo’s manager ‘Gatick’ reports to police, confesses to drinking wine

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The long-awaited truth may be finally coming out in the case of Nida “Tangmo” Patcharaveerapong, after her manager confessed to giving false statements about what happened on the boat that fateful night the Thai actress drowned in the Chao Phraya River in February.

Police are also still searching for another man who was not on the boat that night, but who is suspected to have coached the five boating buddies how to weave their web of lies, so as to mislead police to potentially save their own skins.

On Monday, Idsarin “Gatick” Juthasuksaway reported to police regarding an earlier false statement. After a three-hour meeting with police, Gatick told reporters she had confessed about giving false statements to investigators, but didn’t go into detail about it. She denied that she’d ever said Tangmo had gone to the back of the boat to pee. Police declined to divulge the details of the woman’s confession.

According to reporters at the scene, Gatick had visited the police station to confess to investigators her false statement that she had not drank wine on the boat the night Tangmo drowned. She said that the six boating buddies had in fact drank more than three bottles of wine. She claimed that was the only thing she had lied about; the other details of her story remained the same.

She has been charged with giving false statements to police, which could harm other people. It’s a relatively light charge, resulting in fine of no more than 4,000 baht and a jail term of 2 years tops. The longtime manager was a close friend of Tangmo, who had even adopted her young daughter.

Her adviser, MP Siri Jenjaka, accompanied her to the police station for her confession. Siri is the former PM of the Palang Pracharath Party. He said that Gaitck had told the “whole truth” — and warned the four other boating buddies to do the same. So far, only Gatick has admitted to the allegations pressed by investigators, according to the Bangkok Post.

Siri claimed that Gatick had been lured into giving false statements by a lawyer named “M”, who allegedly guided the five boating buddies to confess in the same way. Initially, they all agreed it was a good idea to follow his advice, but later it came back to haunt them when investigators found cracks in their conspired confessions. That’s when Gatick decided to reach out to Siri for advice, TNA reported.

Gatick’s latest confession follows Sunday’s events, when fellow boating buddy Wisapat Manomaikrat, aka “Sand” — a transgender woman — surrendered to police in Nonthaburi, after they issued a warrant for her arrest. Police say Sand was the last person who was with Tangmo on the speedboat when she fell into the river on the night of February 24 and drowned.

Sand had earlier said Tangmo was holding her legs while she attempted to pee off the back of the boat, when the vessel lurched and she “shook” her legs so as not to fall in the water with her. Police have since debunked the peeing story as a lie.

Last month police said the claims of the five witnesses had conflicting details and that all of them could be charged with giving false statements. Meanwhile, a senate panel recommended the witnesses take polygraph tests.

The four other boating buddies (i.e. suspects) included Sand, Nitas “Job” Kiratisoothisathorn, Tanupat “Por” Lerttaweewit and Phaiboon “Robert” Trikanjananun. Now they all reportedly face more serious charges than Gatick, but have so far denied the allegations from investigators.

Job also reported to Nonthaburi police on Monday after they issued a warrant for his arrest on the charges of destroying evidence and abetting others to avoid criminal charges, the Bangkok Post reported.

Police divers previously recovered objects tossed from the boat into the river the night Tango drowned, including a wine glass, while the white skirt the actress was wearing that night was not found when her body was recovered from the river nearly two days later.

Police will also press charges against one other person who is believed to have offered advice to the boating five regarding how they should massage their message to police investigators, according to Nonthaburi police chief Pol Col Jaturon Anurakbundit.

While he didn’t say who it is, he did confirm that the sixth suspect wasn’t the lawyer Sittra Biabungkerd, who is known to have met with two of the boating buddies after the incident and refused to help them. The investigation continues.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post | TNA

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Jay Shine

A longtime expat in Asia with a degree in journalism and creative writing. Highlights include writing for Condé Nast Traveller and Apple Music. In his spare time, Jay enjoys writing poetry, brewing traditional Chinese tea and lounging with his calico soi cat, Almond.

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