Along with the alleged “assassination plot” or perhaps it is multiple “plots,” against Thailand’s dictator, another unbelievable event has unfolded with the killing of a young Lahu boy by soldiers.
No one has any reason to believe the police or the military on this tragic event. Their story is bizarre, the only credible witness is in their custody and the “investigation” of the killing is being conducted by the people who did the killing.
The Bangkok Post reports on what it says is an “extrajudicial killing.”
The police have “insisted …[the] Lahu activist … was linked to drug trafficking…”. They also claim that the killing “was carried out in self-defence.” As we said in our earlier post, this really does sound like a report from the 1970s or perhaps from the War on Drugs earlier this century.
A police spokesman has claimed that Chaiyapoom Pasae “was shot dead by a soldier in Chiang Mai last Friday as he tried to attack him with a hand grenade.” That spokesman “insisted” there “was no foul play behind Chaiyapoom’s death.”
This is the official spokesman making this claim of nothing untoward when there is meant to be an “investigation” into the events. It is pretty clear where that “investigation” is going.
Locals have called for a broader probe into the killing. They say “they don’t believe the [young] man was embroiled in drug smuggling and that he was an activist dedicated to local causes.”
Experienced in cleaning up such messes and managing official impunity, the police claim that they “found” some “2,800 methamphetamine pills hidden in a car.
Pongnai Saengtala, the driver of the car that Chaiyapoom was in, they say, was being “detained” when Chaiyapoom “ran away.” You can already see that this is is either concocted or that the soldiers and police involved were incompetent dimwits. If Chaiyapoom was a “suspect,” why wasn’t he under guard?
The next claim is equally suspicious: “A soldier chased Chaiyapoom, who turned and threw a hand grenade at the soldier, forcing him to shoot Chaiyapoom. It is not clear where the grenade came from.” That shooting was “only one shot…”.
There’s no story about the grenade going off. In fact, it is being “examined” in the “investigation.” The claim must be that Chaiyapoom threw the grenade as if it was a rock. Earlier versions had him with a knife and a grenade. Believable?
Now, cleaning up, the cops will “trace the source of the drugs that were found in the car…”. We suspect a real “investigation” wouldn’t have to go far to locate that source. As is widely known, the police regularly plant “evidence.”
Yet what they do is “investigate” his family and they will charge the driver and make a deal for a “confession” and for incriminating Chaiyapoom. That’s the pattern of these things.
Of course, the junta is on-side with cops and soldiers:
National Council for Peace and Order [junta] spokesman Winthai Suvaree yesterday said authorities performed their duties according to a code of conduct and none of them would have fired their weapons had it not been necessary.
The military’s death toll of civilians murdered climbs by one more.