• Sonam Tsuboi, 21
  • The parents and officials at police station Pai district Mae Hong Son province.

Body tentatively identified as that of Japanese tourist, 21

national January 23, 2017 01:00

By The Nation

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POLICE HAVE FOUND a body believed to be that of a 21-year-old Japanese tourist who had been reported missing. The parents of Sonam Tsuboi, 21, will attempt to identify the remains today.

The parents had been searching for Tsuboi in Mae Hong Son province’s Pai district, which he had visited before, since earlier this month. 

They were still in Pai yesterday when they learned that the recovered corpse of an unidentified man had a tattoo on the left ankle that matched their son’s. 

Tsuboi reportedly had a history of depression. 

Police said they found the body floating in the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok on December 30 and brought it to a hospital for an autopsy, but had been unable to verify the man’s identity. 

There were no traces of injuries on the body, leading police to initially believe the man had committed suicide, according to Pol Maj-General Ittipol Achariyapradit of the Metropolitan Police Bureau. 

Ittipol added that pictures of the body had been sent to the parents to verify the identity. 

“But they will come to Siriraj Hospital to check the body again,” he said.

Trip to Pai cancelled

A source said officials from the Japanese Embassy |had seen the body and said the tattoo was similar to Tsuboi’s.

Metropolitan Police Division 8 chief Pol Maj-General Samrit Tongtao said DNA tests would definitively determine the corpse’s identity.

In his most recent trip, Tsuboi arrived in Thailand on December 21, but his family had not heard from him since December 27. 

According to his girlfriend, he told her on December 27 that he would cancel a planned trip with her to Pai, which the couple had enjoyed visiting before. The trip had been scheduled to begin on January 7. 

Security camera footage showed Tsuboi leaving his guesthouse with a bag at 9.20am on December 28, which is the last record of anyone seeing him. 

His girlfriend travelled to Thailand on January 7, and lodged a complaint with police after she failed to find Tsuboi. 

His parents later flew to Thailand and asked authorities for help. 

The parents and officials in Mae Hong Son reportedly ended the search in Mae Hong Son after they were alerted of the possible identification. 


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