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Lightning kills one, injures another in northern Thailand storms

Caitlin Ashworth

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Lightning kills one, injures another in northern Thailand storms | The Thaiger
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One man was killed and another was injured in lightning storms in northern Thailand. Both were tending cows on their farms. 62 year old Prachuab Phunok died while he was working on a field in the northeastern Mukdahan province’s Nong Sung district, near the Laos border. Police say he was sitting under a tree when lightning struck and killed him.

Meanwhile in the nearby Phimai district of Nakhon Ratchasima, 55 year old Prachuab Raksai, was also tending to his cows when lightning struck. One cow died, while he survived, but it’s unclear how serious his injuries are.

Odds are very low of being struck by lightning, but just 2 weeks ago, a farmer in the northern province of Buri Ram was also killed in the exact same way.

61 year old Pornthep Boontee was rounding up his cows when he was struck. His body was found by villagers shortly after the rain stopped, near a pole used for tying up cows. Police say lightning probably hit the pole and killed Boontee.

Storms have been causing massive destruction in the northern provinces. A roof was torn off of a school in Buri Ram, and power poles have been blown down. Many houses have been damaged as well as barns and animal pens.

The Thai Meteorological Department has issued a warning for summer thunderstorms in upper Thailand, which could bring high winds and even hail. The department says people in the northern regions should beware of the severe conditions and stay away from big trees and billboards.

SOURCES: Bangkok Post | Nation Thailand | Thai Meteorological Department

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Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

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Crime

25 arrested after police raid online gambling base in Mae Sot

Caitlin Ashworth

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25 arrested after police raid online gambling base in Mae Sot | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Sanook

Police arrested 25 people involved in online gambling after a raid Saturday night at a house in Mae Sot, Northern Thailand, right on the Burmese border. Police also confiscated equipment used for the online gaming. Out of the 25 people arrested, 5 of them were Thai and the rest were foreigners, mostly from China.

Since people have been staying at home due to the coronavirus pandemic, many have been gambling online, the chief of the Immigration Police Bureau says. Police seized 7 computers, 14 smartphones and 2,000 to 2,500 SIM cards. The gambling operations also has 50 bank accounts with a total of around 100 million baht.

The illegal gambling business operated 24 hours a day with employees working in 3 shifts that were 8 hours each.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Northern Thailand

Nakhon Phanom teacher arrested for sexually abusing niece

Jack Burton

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Nakhon Phanom teacher arrested for sexually abusing niece | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Line Today

Police in Issan’s Nakhon Phanom province yesterday announced the arrest of a teacher for the alleged sexual abuse of his 13 year old niece, who lived with him and his wife. The 52 year old man was taken into custody at his house in the downtown district after a provincial court approved an arrest warrant on Thursday. His name and the school’s are being withheld.

The deputy chief of the city police says the man has denied the charge. He was taken to the provincial court where police requested to detain him further. It is the fourth case of alleged sexual abuse of minors involving teachers this month. Child rights activists are campaigning to protect students from rogue teachers.

The man’s wife teaches at the same school, and was reportedly shocked by the allegations.

The girl had already stayed with her uncle and aunt for 3 years while her parents worked in another province. Police say her parents thought it unusual that the suspect was in the girl’s room when they spoke to her by video recently.

They decided to bring her to stay with them. The girl later confessed that she had been sexually abused. The parents registered a complaint with Nakhon Phanom police on May 18. Police investigated and after a medical examination and decided to press charges

The school’s director said the suspect would face severe punishment if he’s found guilty.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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News Desk

Udon Thani temple blaze, abbot’s death likely caused by short circuit

Jack Burton

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Udon Thani temple blaze, abbot’s death likely caused by short circuit | The Thaiger
FILE PHOTO

Investigators in Udon Thani in Thailand’s north believe a short circuit was the cause of a fire at Wat Pa Ban Tad forest temple that killed a revered abbot. The assistant national police chief yesterday led senior officers and Udon Thani’s deputy governor to inspect the fire-ravaged living quarters of Phra Ajarn Sudjai Thanthamano, the abbot, who died in the blaze.

75 year old Phra Ajarn was in his quarters when the fire broke out on the afternoon of May 22. Monks, novices and citizens tried to put out the fire and rescue the abbot, who was trapped inside. Firemen later sprayed water to douse the fire. When the flames died down, the monks rushed in to bring the abbot out. He was taken to a van and rushed to Udon Thani but died on the way.

Police say the death of the abbot drew public attention. Officers handling the case have so far interrogated 22 witnesses to find the cause of the fire. They found no traces of a struggle or bruises on the abbot’s body, nor was there any evidence suggesting the fire arson or the work of men. The assistant national police chief, who spoke after a meeting with the investigators, forensic officers and electricians, gave more weight to the electrical system as the cause of the fire.

Police made the remarks following online speculation on the cause of the fire at the famous forest temple, long associated with the late Luangta Maha Bua Yannasampanno, thought by many of his followers to be an Arahant (someone who has attained Enlightenment).

The caretaker of the temple said donations for the cremation of Phra Ajarn Sudjai now stand at 20 million baht. Several agencies suggested part of the money should be used to improve fire prevention at the temple.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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