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Inconclusive Inquest

Democrats demand action against reds

Chalerm says court yet to point out killer; DSI insists murder charges against Abhisit, Suthep will stay

Democrat MPs yesterday called on the government to investigate and prepare to take legal measures now that the Criminal Court has found that the red shirts also used weapons during the 2010 political turmoil.

At the House meeting, Democrat MP Nipit Intarasombat asked what the government was planning to do now that the court has discovered that the ruling Pheu Thai Party's key supporters also used weapons against military officers.

However, Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yoobamrung said the court's inconclusive inquest into the death of Boonmee Rermsuk did not point out the killer.

Boonmee's was the fifth case related to the 2010 crackdown that the Criminal Court launched an enquiry into, and was the only one in which witnesses and evidence showed that the protesters may have used weapons.

In four of the cases, the court ruled that the fatal shots came from the troops' side, but in Boonmee's case, the court said there was not enough evidence to establish the killer.

However, Department of Special Investigation chief Tarit Pengdith said yesterday that though Boonmee's case was inconclusive, it would have no effect on the murder charges levelled against former PM Abhisit Vejjajiva and his then deputy Suthep Thaugsuban.

The DSI has filed murder charges against Abhisit and Suthep in four previous cases on grounds that they were responsible for establishing and controlling the Centre for the Resolution of the Emergency Situation.

"Since the inquest is inconclusive, the DSI will not file charges against Abhisit and Suthep in this case," Tarit said. "But this case will not affect the other cases because the court has issued separate rulings."

Tarit said that the DSI would look for more information in Boonmee's case.

However, he said, if evidence shows that Boonmee was shot by one of the "men in black" or other unknown armed fighters, then the DSI would not charge the red-shirt leaders because there was no clear evidence showing who they had received orders from.

'Men in black' considered

Meanwhile, a DSI source said the department's new team had summoned investigators in the terrorism case to testify about the so-called "men in black". The source added that investigators are insisting that the armed men in black were part of the protesting crowds and had used guns against the troops.

The investigators reportedly testified that the red-shirt leaders had themselves said that armed fighters backed them, though the "men in black" could not be identified because their faces were hidden.

The investigators also said that the Supreme Court ruling had stated that criminals always got support from their own people.

Also yesterday, Thida Thavornseth, chairperson of the Democratic Alliance against Dictatorship, said it was not possible that the protesters killed Boonmee because none of them were armed. She added that the inquest was inconclusive because the DSI investigators had failed to provide enough information to the court.


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