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Thailand murders: Two men found guilty and face death for UK killings

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  • #16
    Police suspect hidden agenda behind Koh Tao protests

    Police told a press conference on Sunday morning that protests against the death sentences handed down in the Koh Tao murders might be politically motivated and have ill intentions.

    Pol Maj Gen Piyaphan Pingmuang said there were criminal prosecutions in 126 murder cases involving Myanmar people in Thailand in the past year, but protests in the Koh Tao case were suspicious.

    He was referring to protests in Myanmar in the past few days in relation to the case in which two Myanmar migrant workers were given the death sentence


    • #17
      There definately is an adgenda and it is not hidden .....................

      JUSTICE is the name .


      • #18
        Senior police officers supervising the locality of the murders and those responsible for scientific crime investigation assured in the press conference that investigation, scientific examination including that on DNA profiles of concerned people, and checks and balances throughout police investigation were transparent and accountable, met international standard and were proved in the court.

        really , how about this then ?

        Pornthip Rojanasunand, the head of Thailand's forensics institute, told the Koh Samui court that DNA found on the alleged murder weapon does not match that of the two accused Burmese men.


        • #19
          Myanmar closes border pass

          Myanmar authorities on Sunday closed the Phaya Tong Su border checkpoint opposite the Three Pagodas pass in Thailand's Kanchanaburi province, a regional army commander said.

          Maj Gen Thammanoon Withee, commander of the 9th Infantry Division supervising Kanchanaburi and nearby provinces, said Myanmar authorities did not allow Thai people and tourists to cross the border to the Phaya Tong Su side while Thai authorities opened their Three Pagodas pass as usual.

          He said he had received reports that Myanmar people in Phaya Tong Su planned to stage three days of symbolic protests from Dec 28 over the death sentences handed down in the Koh Tao murder case.

          He said soldiers would meet Myanmar workers on the Thai side on Monday to explain the judicial process concerning the murder case.

          He was referring to the death sentences on two Myanmar migrant workers found guilty of murdering two British tourists on Koh Tao island in southern Thailand in September last year.

          The death penalty was the sentence of the Court of First Instance only and concerned people should be calm because the case could undergo trial at the Appeal Court and the Supreme Court in the future, Maj Gen Thammanoon said.

          He visited soldiers securing the Three Pagodas pass in Kanchanaburi's Sangkhla Buri district on Sunday.

          Pakorn Kanwallee, chief of Sangkhla Buri district, said tourism and business operations in the border district remained lively as vast numbers of tourists continued to arrive for the New Year holiday.

          Local hotels were fully occupied, there had been no hotel reservations cancelled, and Myanmar workers were returning to their factories in Sangkhla Buri, he said.

          Myanmar authorities were not letting Thai tourists cross the border into Phaya Tong Su because of safety reasons, while Thai and foreign tourists were happily shopping near the Three Pagodas Pass, he said.

          Myanmar soldiers had promised to control future demonstrations and prevent protesters from entering Thai territory, the district chief said.


          • #20
            Koh Tao Murders: Protest at Thai - Myanmar Border [PHOTOS]
            Teeranai Charuvastra
            26 December 2015

            Demonstrators near Tachilek Thai - Myanmar border crossing on Dec. 26 demand release of Zaw Lin and Wai Phyo.

            CHIANG RAI sentenced to death


            • #21
              Hundreds protest outside Thai embassy over Koh Tao verdict
              December 26, 2015

              Hundreds of people gathered outside the Thai Embassy in Yangon on Friday to protest the sentencing of two Myanmar migrant workers to death for the 2014 murder of two British backpackers on the Thai resort island of Koh Tao, The Irrawaddy reported.

              The Koh Samui Provincial Court on Thursday found Zaw Lin and Wai Phyo guilty of the murder of David Miller and the rape and murder of Hannah Witheridge on Koh Tao in September last year, a verdict defence lawyers have vowed to appeal.

              The handling of the high-profile case by Thai police has drawn significant controversy, with the accused pair alleging they were tortured into a confession and the defense team contending key evidence was mishandled.

              Protesters, including Buddhist monks, congregated outside the Thai Embassy in Rangoon from around 10.30am, with numbers swelling over the next few hours.

              Police erected barbed wire barricades on Thursday ahead of a smaller demonstration and on Friday, the road in front of the embassy was blocked where protesters gathered with placards and chants demanding justice.

              The two accused migrants are both Arakanese and many ethnic Arakanese joined the protest on Friday.



              • #22

                24 December 2015

                Defense lawyers had asked to retest crucial DNA samples taken from the bodies but authorities issued conflicting statements on DNA evidence and, at one point, said that it had been used up.

                No independent re-testing of DNA evidence has been done in the case.



                • #23
                  Protesting death sentence against the two Myanmar migrants
                  Saturday, 26 December 2015

                  Crowds of protesters stood outside the Thai embassy in Yangon on Friday to protest the death sentence of two Myanmar migrant workers over the murders of two British tourists on the Thai island of Koh Samui in September 2014.






                  continues below


                  • #24





                    continues below


                    • #25

                      Photos: Thet Ko/Mizzima



                      • #26

                        KYAW KHA/ THE IRRAWADDY
                        Friday, December 25, 2015

                        Aung Myo Thant, a Burmese lawyer who has been working with the defense team on the Koh Tao murder case.
                        (Photo: The Irrawaddy)

                        What can you expect from doing so?

                        If the appeal is granted, the penalty will not be more than ten years.

                        I am 80 percent sure of this.

                        Are you disappointed that they were given the death penalty though they seemed to have had a good chance of acquittal? There are many cases of Burmese migrant workers being wrongly accused in Thailand. So, will the death penalty heighten the concerns of Burmese migrant workers?

                        I see that much needs to be done for Burmese migrant workers to receive fair hearings.



                        • #27

                          Sunday, December 27th, 2015

                          A demonstrator holds a placard outside the Thai embassy during a protest against the death sentence of Myanmar labour workers Zaw Lin and Win Zaw Tun
                          Protesters parade down the streets of Tachilek, Myanmar
                          A protester talks to fellow protesters as they protest in support of the two Myanmar migrant workers Zaw Lin and Win Zaw Htun in front of the Thai embassy
                          Zaw Lin and Win Zaw Htun were yesterday transferred from the Samui prison in Surat Thani to the high-security Nakhon Si Thammarat Central Prison.


                          • #28
                            Law Council urges Myanmar people to have trust in Thai justice system
                            December 27, 2015

                            The Law Council of Thailand has urged the Myanmar people to have trust in the Thai justice system and assured that its volunteer lawyers would do their best to defend the two Myanmar defendants and to appeal their death verdict to the higher court.

                            The two Myanmar migrant workers, Zaw Lin and Zaw Tun were found guilty for the murder of David Miller and Ms Hannah Witheridge on Koh Tao in September last year.

                            The appeal and assurance were in a statement issued by the council
                            Courtesy of The Law Council of Thailand


                            • #29
                              Thai embassy in Yangon closes consular services for three days due to demonstration

                              YANGON, Dec. 28 (Xinhua) -- The Thai Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar, began a three-day closure of its consular services on Monday as prolonged demonstration had caused difficulties in access to the embassy compound.

                              However, the embassy will continue to provide special visa service during the time to emergency case such as emergency medical treatment on the basis of humanitarian ground, said an announcement of the embassy's consular section.

                              Hundreds of Myanmar people have been gathering outside the Thai Embassy here for the past several days protesting against the recent death sentence verdict of Thailand's Koh Samui provincial court on two Myanmar migrant workers.

                              Similar demonstrations also broke out in other places outside Yangon.

                              An appeal will be made against the death sentence within a month and coordination will be made with the Lawyers' Council of Thailand, Myanmar Embassy in Thailand and Myanmar's civil society organizations in Thailand before Jan. 11, government officials said.

                              Meanwhile, a Thai diplomat in Yangon has promised to convey the demand of Myanmar protestors for appeal to the King of Thailand as soon as possible.

                              The embassy has also alerted Thai nationals in Myanmar to watch out for safety.



                              • #30
                                Thai PM defends verdict against Myanmar workers found guilty over tourist murders
                                31 min ago

                                BANGKOK (REUTERS) - Thailand's Prime Minister lashed out on Monday (Dec 28) at protesters who took to the streets of Yangon over the weekend after a Thai court sentenced two Myanmar migrant workers to death for murdering two British tourists.

                                Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said critics should respect the verdict and that Thailand's justice system would not bow to public pressure.

                                "They have the right to appeal, right? Laws all over the world have this. Or should Thai law not have this? Is it the case that we should release all people when pressured?," a visibly angry Prayuth told reporters before boarding a plane to the southern province of Surat Thani.

                                Zaw Lin and Win Zaw Htun, both 22, were found guilty by a Thai court on Thursday (Dec 24) of killing Ms Hannah Witheridge, 23, and Mr David Miller, 24, whose battered bodies were found on a beach on the southern Thai holiday island of Koh Tao in 2014.

                                The verdicts sparked anger in Myanmar where hundreds have held daily protests outside the Thai Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar's biggest city, calling for the two to be released.

                                Protesters said the two men were used as scapegoats by the authorities in an effort to close the high-profile case.

                                On Saturday (Dec 26), Myanmar's army chief called for Thailand to review the sentencing of the two men.

                                The murders on Koh Tao, a laid-back divers' paradise, sullied Thailand's image as a tourist haven.

                                A police investigation into the killings was riddled with allegations of police incompetence, torture and mishandling of evidence, but a judge dismissed allegations of torture, saying there was no evidence it took place.

                                The court based its ruling on DNA evidence that it said linked Zaw Lin and Win Zaw Htun to the crime, including samples collected from Ms Witheridge's body.

                                Both men were also found guilty of raping Ms Witheridge.

                                On Saturday (Dec 26), the two were moved from Koh Samui prison, where they have been in custody for the past 14 months, to a high-security prison in the southern province of Nakhon Si Thammarat.

                                A lawyer for the men has said they would appeal within one month.