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Friday, March 1, 2024


In the quiet district of Aranyaprathet, Sa Kaeo, a recent incident has raised eyebrows and sparked public outrage. The Royal Thai Police (RIP) is under scrutiny for their handling of an assault case that led to the tragic death of a 47-year-old woman. This article delves into the details of the case, shedding light on the controversies surrounding the investigation.


II. The Disturbing Footage

A. CCTV Revelation

The investigation took an unexpected turn when a TV reporter uncovered security camera footage. The footage revealed a group of teenagers, aged between 13 and 16, assaulting the victim, identified as Buaphan, who was believed to be mentally unstable.

B. Husband’s Arrest and Release

Buaphan’s husband, Panya Khongsaengkham, initially confessed to the crime and was promptly arrested. However, after the emergence of the security camera footage, he was released. The focus shifted to the five teenagers, who were subsequently apprehended and questioned in connection with Buaphan’s death.

III. Public Distrust

A. Allegations of Nepotism

Amidst public outcry, speculations arose that one of the teenagers involved was the son of a local policeman. This fueled suspicions about the police’s handling of the case, with many questioning whether Mr. Panya was made a scapegoat.

B. Seeking Justice

Buaphan’s relatives, accompanied by activist Kanthat Pongpaiboonvej, approached deputy national police chief Pol Gen Surachate Hakparn, urging a fair and transparent investigation. They expressed frustration over their inability to locate Mr. Panya after his release.


IV. Pol Gen Surachate’s Intervention

Pol Gen Surachate assured a thorough investigation and personally traveled to Aranyaprathet to oversee the case. He acknowledged the intensified calls for changes in laws dealing with minor offenders but emphasized the need for careful deliberation.

V. Police Committee and Investigation

A. Committee Formation

Pol Col Pichet Srichantra, chief of Aranyaprathet police station, formed a committee to investigate why Mr. Panya confessed to killing his wife. He maintained that the police had obtained the security camera footage and arrested the teenagers before the news broke.

B. History of Abuse

Citing witnesses, Pol Col Pichet revealed Mr. Panya’s history of domestic violence. He suggested that the confession might have been coerced under pressure, leading to Mr. Panya’s release upon reviewing the camera footage.

VI. Preventive Measures

Pol Maj Gen Omsin Boonyanuson, chief of Sa Kaeo police, took preventive action by transferring the father of one of the suspects, who is a policeman, to the provincial police office. This move aimed to avoid any potential intervention in the investigation.

VII. Revisiting the Case

Local media reports indicated that the police had to reevaluate the case after CCTV footage, submitted by a news channel, showed Buaphan allegedly being harassed and attacked by the teenagers. The footage suggested a potential motive for the assault.


VIII. Conclusion

In the quest for justice, the Royal Thai Police faces the challenging task of untangling a web of complexities in the Sa Kaeo case. Public scrutiny and demands for legal reforms echo the need for a thorough, unbiased investigation.

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