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Police ignore NHRC summons over Koh Tao rape-murder case

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Police ignore NHRC summons over Koh Tao rape-murder case | Thaiger

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Police ignore NHRC summons over Koh Tao rape-murder case
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Police officers failed to show up before the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) yesterday to answer questions related to the alleged torture of two Myanmar suspects, who are charged with murdering two Britons on Koh Tao last month.

The two suspects last week told a team from the Lawyers’ Council of Thailand that they were tortured into confessing to murders they did not commit. As a result, the NHRC’s subcommittee on civilians’ rights and political rights summoned representatives from the National Police Office (NPO) to provide information yesterday.

However, the NPO told the NHRC that investigation into the case was already in the hands of the public prosecutors and that it needed to seek prior approval from the prosecutors before providing any details on the case to the NHRC.

NHRC commissioner Dr Niran Pitakwatchara, who chairs the subcommittee on civilians’ rights and political rights, said yesterday that the NPO should realise that the NHRC is not “investigating” the murder.

“We are looking into the alleged abuse of human rights,” he pointed out, adding that his subcommittee will summon the police again and will lodge a complaint if there is no response.

“Police must come before our subcommittee to provide information at 1.30pm on November 3,” Niran said.

Meanwhile, the Koh Samui Court yesterday approved a police request that the suspects’ detention be extended by another 12 days, as more time was needed to complete the investigation. Public prosecutors have instructed investigators to gather more information for the third time, and police will work further into the case.

The judge said the suspects could be detained for up to 84 days.

An informed source, meanwhile, said British police had already started gathering information on the case. The British team stepped in after word spread that the ‘real’ culprit in the case might evade the long arm of the law.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

 

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