Mystery unfolds as Thai man’s cremation halted over false identity

Picture courtesy of Dailynews

A confusing situation arose at Wat Sai Noi in Nonthaburi when the police ordered a halt to cremation after discovering that the deceased was using someone else’s identification (ID) card. The deceased had been working under a false identity for several years, leaving his employer in the dark about his real identity.

Yesterday, news emerged that a body was found at Hall 1, Wat Sai Noi, with an identity that did not match that on the ID card. The deceased was marked as Jon Laoklom in front of the funeral portrait. However, the Help the Poor and Homeless page had identified the deceased as Chitakorn, a 49 year old resident of Na Pho, Buriram, according to his identification and death certificates.

He had passed away at Sai Noi Hospital on January 2, but this name did not match the one on the funeral portrait, leading to suspicion from the page and an order for an examination of the body.

Twenty-three-year-old Thaksaphon Phromsakun, from the Help the Poor and Homeless team, said that the deceased’s relatives had reached out for assistance from the page, requesting a funeral and flowers. Thaksaphon had delivered them to the temple when the deceased’s relatives informed him that the name on the page did not match that of the deceased.

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An investigation revealed that the person whose identity was on the ID card was still alive and living abroad. This led Thaksaphon to suspect that the deceased had been using Chitakorn’s ID card to take advantage of Chitakorn’s gold card benefits.

Upon learning of this, Thaksaphon informed the deceased’s employer to contact Sai Noi Hospital to change the name on the death certificate. However, the hospital stated that they could not change the name without official identity confirmation documents and suggested they record the incident at Sai Noi Police Station. After receiving the report, the police ordered a halt to all ceremonies, including the cremation, reported KhaoSod.

The authorities are now in the process of contacting the real relatives, as burning the body would make it impossible to determine the true identity of the deceased, which could lead to accusations of fraudulently using someone else’s body. Thus, it is necessary to prove who the deceased is.

Boonsong Thunman, the 37 year old deceased’s employer, visited the investigating officer at Sai Noi Police Station for questioning. He stated that his employee, known as Chitakorn, had suffered from chest pain and difficulty breathing.

He had been taken to Sai Noi Hospital on December 31 last year, where doctors diagnosed him with chronic alcohol poisoning. Chitakorn passed away on January 2, and the hospital issued a death certificate. The cause of death was listed as a blood infection.

Boonsong continued that the deceased had told him his nickname was Jon. Upon learning of the situation, Boonsong had the funeral portrait rewritten to the name Jon, with the surname Laoklom, which was his wife’s surname.

Boonsong had no relatives but if he used Boonsong’s surname, people who heard the news would come to ask questions. Initially, Boonsong just wanted to finish the cremation, but the police informed him that he could be charged with fraudulently using a body, so he had to cancel all the arrangements.

After learning that the person named Chitakorn was still alive and working in the United States, Boonsong was confident that the deceased was using Chitakorn’s ID card and had been secretly using someone else’s ID for the past two years. When the deceased applied for a job with him, he had presented an ID card in the name of Chitakorn, so Boonsong hired him as a general construction worker and rented a house for him in Sri Prachak Village 5.

The police coordinated with forensic scientists to inspect and identify the body. The body was kept as an unclaimed body, waiting for the real relatives to claim it. Meanwhile, all funeral arrangements at Wat Sai Noi have been cancelled.

Thailand News

Nattapong Westwood

Nattapong Westwood is a Bangkok-born writer who is half Thai and half Aussie. He studied in an international school in Bangkok and then pursued journalism studies in Melbourne. Nattapong began his career as a freelance writer before joining Thaiger. His passion for news writing fuels his dedication to the craft, as he consistently strives to deliver engaging content to his audience.

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