Thailand

Corpse wearing Royal Thai Navy shirt is a fisherman, not a HTMS Sukhothai sailor

The dead man wearing a Royal Thai Navy shirt found washed up on a beach in Songkhla province this morning was a fisherman and not a sailor from the HTMS Sukhothai, which sank in the Gulf of Thailand just over a week ago.

Many thought the man may be one of the 11 HTMS Sukhothai sailors still missing. However, a report from Songkhla province’s Thai Maritime Enforcement Command Centre Region 2 identifies the deceased as 61 year old Saroj Mindo, a fisherman from Mueang Songkhla district.

The fisherman was aboard the Sap Sunan fishing boat which sank in the Gulf of Thailand on the same day as the HTMS Sukhothai. The boat went down during a storm 30 nautical miles off the coast of Songkhla province.

On Wednesday, a navy boat brought ashore the bodies of three Sap Sunan fishermen and rescued one sailor, Sia Soi, of Cambodian nationality. One crew member, Saroj, was missing until he was confirmed dead today.

Saroj’s relatives travelled to Sathing Phra Hospital and confirmed his identity. Saroj’s body was returned to his relatives for religious ceremonies to be undertaken.

ORIGINAL STORY: Body of tattooed man wearing Royal Thai Navy shirt washes up in southern Thailand

The body of an unidentified man wearing a Royal Thai Navy shirt washed up on a beach in Songkhla province in southern Thailand early this morning, reports KhaoSod.

It is not yet confirmed whether the man is one of 11 sailors still missing from the HTMS Sukhothai, which sank off the coast of Prachuap Khiri Khan province just over one week ago.

At 3.20am, officers at Chumphon Police Station received a report that locals found a decaying body on the beach in the Sanam Chai subdistrict, Sating Phra District, Songkhla province.

The deceased was wearing a blue long-sleeved shirt with “ROYAL THAI NAVY” printed on the chest and blue underwear. He had tattoos on his right forearm and his back, reports KhaoSod.

The body was taken to Sathing Phra Hospital for identification.

Today, Royal Thai Navy officials from the 2nd Naval Area Command will investigate whether the man is one of 11 sailors missing from the HTMS Sukhothai, which sank 19 nautical miles off the coast of Prachuap Khiri Khan province just over one week ago.

KhaoSod reports that the Naval Operations Centre has confirmed that the deceased’s shirt is a real Royal Thai Navy shirt.

Yesterday, navy spokesperson Admiral Pokrong Monthatphalin reported that of the 105 crew members aboard the HTMS Sukhothai, 76 have been rescued, 18 have died and 11 are still missing.

The navy hopes to recover all the bodies of missing sailors, added the spokesperson.

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leah

Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.