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Judgment soon on murder suspect’s sanity

Legacy Phuket Gazette



Judgment soon on murder suspect’s sanity | Thaiger

PHUKET: Specialists at the Suan Saranlom Hospital in Surat Thani say that by the end of this month they will be able to form a judgment as to whether murder suspect Siwadol “Dol” Lomin is insane or not. Dol is the prime suspect in the murder of popular Koh Yao long-tail boatman Bangsen Jaidee, 52, whose body was found floating in the sea off Naka Noi Island on November 12, with three bullets in it. He had been missing for two days. Psychiatrist Dr Burin Sura’arunsamrit, who is the doctor in charge of Dol’s case, told the Gazette that the case had definitely not been forgotten. Indeed, he said, it is currently the subject of intense discussion. “I’m not in a position to make a decision [on my own] as to whether he is insane or not. We need opinions from other doctors and from the director of the hospital. This is a serious case, so we have to discuss it very carefully,” Dr Burin said. The police, meanwhile, will not move against Dol. Although the law does allow police to arrest suspects who are believed to be insane, in practice this rarely happens. This is because a person who is certified as truly insane is deemed by Thai law not to be responsible for his actions, and therefore not capable of being guilty of criminal acts. As a result, public prosecutors generally will not proceed with cases involving offenders who may later be shown to be insane. The Thai Penal Code does, however, allow a miscreant to be brought before a court “if the offender is still partially able to appreciate the nature or illegality of his act, or is still partially able to control himself.” This is what the specialists will be trying to establish. Meanwhile, the long wait for a decision is taking its toll on Bangsen’s family. His daughter Kwanjai, who found his corpse after two days of searching the waters of Phang Nga Bay, told the Gazette, “The police have told me that we have to wait for the result from the doctors in Surat Thani.” She added that she is “really depressed” that no one has yet been brought to justice for killing her father.


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