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Mystery Phitsanulok prisoner deaths to be investigated

PHOTO: Mishvo in Motion

An investigation has been launched into the deaths of four prisoners in the northern province of Phitsanulok over the New Year holiday break. A spokesman says that The Thai Corrections Department has created a panel to investigate the deaths, which happened in close succession.

Officials say the four prisoners showed symptoms related to food poisoning, such as numbness in the limbs caused by low potassium.

Pol Colonel Naras Savestanan, the department’s director-general, says that, following the incident, the department sent the director of the Medical Service Division, with assistance from the director of the Bureau of Epidemiology under the Department of Disease Control, Ministry of Public Health to investigate the cause of the deaths at Wangthong Hospital.

When autopsy reports are available, the panel will examine the results as well as the delivery and handling of food at prisons specifically, and in general. They will then focus on the Phitsanulok jail to determine whether the process was any different, complete, transparent and met established standards.

This from Rattakrit Jaijing, the chief inspector of the department.

A police spokesman, commenting on the matter, says food suppliers to Thai prisons are chosen based on Finance Ministry regulations, and so food quality shouldn’t be an issue.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Jack Burton

Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

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