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Police investigating links between two murders and attack on red guard

Police are still in the dark about who might be behind the murder of two men and a serious attack on another. The murders and attack took place in Bangkok while the People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) anti-government protests were in full swing.

Pol Maj-General Thitiraj Nongharpitak, deputy metropolitan police chief, told the press yesterday that inquiries had progressed to an unspecified point, but admitted that police could not locate or even identify the killers and attackers.

Speaking at the same press conference, Pol Colonel Methi Rakphan, deputy commander of Metropolitan Police Division 7, said investigators pointed out some similarities between the three attacks.

Boonthiang Kham-in, 41, a Chaiyaphum resident, was shot dead and his body was left on Kamphaeng Phet Road in late February. Shortly after that, an unidentified man was murdered and his body stuffed inside a sack and dumped into the Chao Phraya River.

The body was later found near the Riverside Hotel. Methi said the corpse was yet to be identified.

In a third incident, a security guard called Yuem Nillah was attacked and thrown into the Bang Pakong River last week. He survived.

Methi said the three cases were similar as the victims were men and had been assaulted before the first two were shot dead. Also, all three had been tied up.

He said that based on Yuem's accounts, the three victims had apparently been attacked by men who appeared to be members of the PDRC. Yuem also told police the attackers pulled his clothes off and dressed him to look like a PDRC protester.

All three victims were found wearing a PDRC wristband and a whistle round their necks attached by a cord in the colours of the national flag.

Methi said police had also learned that Boonthiang and Yuem used to work as security guards during the 2010 red-shirt protests.

He said police had found a CCTV clip showing four masked men in a pick-up truck stopping to dump something from the Rama VIII Bridge one night before the unidentified body was found floating near the Riverside Hotel.

Methi noted that the four managed to drive on to the bridge at a time when it was being blocked by PDRC protesters.


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