Pattaya Daily News

14 December 2010 :: 15:12:16 pm 47617

DSI denies leaked investigative report of Japanese cameraman’s death

BANGKOK, Dec 13 - The chief of Thailand's Department of Special Investigation (DSI) on Monday reaffirmed the integrity of his agency's investigative documents relating to the case of a Japanese photo journalist killed during the confrontation between government troops and anti-government Red Shirt protesters in April, asserting that they were not leaked as earlier claimed by a key protest leader.
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DSI Director-General Tharit Pengdit made his remarks after opposition Puea Thai MP and core Red Shirt leader Jatuporn Prompan told a news conference claiming that he received leaked investigation accounts on the deaths of Red Shirt protesters and the Japanese national killed during the March to May political disturbances and planned to distribute them to the foreign media, as well as to the Japanese embassy in Bangkok.

Eighty-nine persons, both security personnel and protesters, were killed and more than 1,900 were wounded in a number of clashes between troops and demonstrators of the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) during their ten-week long rallies against the Democrat-led coalition government.

Among those killed were Italian freelance photographer Fabio Polenghi and Hiroyuki Muramoto, Japanese cameraman working for the British Reuters news agency.

Mr Tharit, speaking in his capacity as investigation chief on the terrorism and unrest cases, asserted that the investigations on the deaths during political unrest are still underway and no conclusion has been made, while also urging the Red Shirt leader not to raise the incomplete investigation to influence the public.

He added the documents that Mr Jatuporn had referred to, as seen in media, carried significantly different information from those of the DSI.

Regarding the investigation on the death of Mr Hiroyuki, the DSI chief said the investigation is still at the first step which is an autopsy by local police.

Mr Tharit elaborated that the case of the Japanese cameraman therefore was sent back to National Police Bureau to conduct the autopsy, together with the cases of six victims killed at Pathumwanaram Temple.

If police conclude that Mr Kiroyuki’s death was not caused by state personnel, they will forward the case to DSI for further investigation, said Mr Tharit.

Mr Tharit explained that if state employees are found to have been involved with his death, police will send the case to court. Once the court rules that Mr Kiroyuki’s death was caused by government personnel in their operations, then the DSI will work on a murder case and that will pave the way for bringing the culprits to court.

“For the time being, it is too early to conclude the case. I don’t understand why Mr Jatuporn brought to foreign media what he claimed to be DSI’s detailed investigation,” the DSI chief said.

Mr Tharit added that officials at the Japanese embassy in Bangkok have met DSI investigators no less than five times to discuss the case and have also attended the witness hearings.

“The DSI has provided the Japanese diplomats detailed information on the case and how the witness hearings have been conducted,” reiterated Mr Tharit. “They have got more information than what Mr Jatuporn said, and the Japanese ambassador to Thailand is satisfied with the clarification from the Thai authorities.” (MCOT online news)

Photo : Internet   Category : Politics News

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