German held for manslaughter in Khao Lak

KHAO LAK, PHANG NGA: Phang Nga Police are investigating the death of a young German tourist found dead on the beach in Khao Lak early yesterday morning.

The body of 21-year-old Sebastian Wolff of Munich, covered in cuts and bruises, was discovered about 30 meters from the Briza Beach Resort and Spa at about 6:30am.

Police estimated the time of death at about six hours before the body’s discovery.

Police tried to question 21-year-old German Florian Zehentmair, but Mr Zehentmair was too inebriated to answer coherently, the state-run Andaman News reported.

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Mr Zehentmair had checked into a room at a local hotel with the victim on May 12, according to several reports.

Siangtai Daily newspaper reported that the pair went out drinking and walked along the beach until they met up with a group of six young Thai people, three males and three females.

The remnants of a small campfire littered with beer bottles and plates of snacks was found near the location where Mr Wolff’s body was discovered.

According to the report, the two Germans were a couple and Mr Wolff became jealous when Mr Zehentmair became “too familiar” with some of their new friends.

Witnesses at the scene reported that the men left the group several times to argue.

The final time, Mr Zehentmair came back alone looking very upset, but continued drinking until about 4am, at which time the Thai youngsters went home.

A short while later, a staff member from the hotel discovered Mr Wolff’s body on the beach and reported it to police.

Thai Muang District Police Superintendent Kulthon Chalaadphate was quoted as saying Mr Zehentmair faces charges of causing injury resulting in the death of another person, a charge he has denied.

Col Kulthon was quoted as saying police believe the suspect hit the victim over the head with a rock and that he either died from the wound or was left unconscious and drowned when the tide came in.

Phang Nga Governor Suriya Palusuk has ordered a fast and thorough investigation into the case, which he described as the first of its kind in Phang Nga. He also expressed concern about its impact on tourism.

Police have notified the German embassy in order to inform Mr Wolff’s family of his death and arrange to turn over his body, which was taken to Thai Muang Hospital for examination.

— Siangtai Daily

Phuket News

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