The sharper edge to traveling in Asia

“Just go home and make another daughter!” Thai court officials tell murdered woman’s mother

Written By: herbrunbridge - Jan• 13•16

KoTao1c-300x204Here at WoWasis, we’ve found that most murder stories in the Thai press have real gems buried deeply inside. But even we were shocked when unnamed Thai officials invoked their interpretation of Theravada Buddhism while making a helpful suggestion to the parents of noted crime victim Hannah Witheridge. According to the Bangkok Post, sister Laura Witheridge heard Thai officials telling her parents “Why are you here? Why do you care? She is dead already. Just go home and make another one [daughter]. She will be back in 30 days as something else, she may have better luck next time.”

While the Witheridges are contemplating making another daughter with better luck, we find ourselves asking: What will Hannah Witheridge come back as? Probably not a ladyboy, we think. Many Thais believe that ladyboys exist in this life because in a previous one they were adulterers. We don’t expect she’ll be a cockroach either, although just presently we can’t remember what previous peccadillo would engender that sort of transformation. Our bet is that Hannah’s family, if indeed they themselves have adopted the Buddhist philosophy, would probably take just about anything other than Hannah’s return as a Thai court official.

The Witheridge crime is probably the hottest one in Thailand these days. As we reported more than a year ago (see our story Four things you can do to avoid getting murdered on Koh Tao or any tropical island), Witheridge and her boyfriend, David Miller, were killed on the beach on the idyllic island of Ko Tao. Hannah was raped as well. Despite persistent rumors that the killing was done by the son of a prominent “influential” local family, two Burmese immigrants were found guilty of the crime. The DNA found on the alleged murder weapon, a hoe, could not be linked to either of the two suspects, according to Khunying Porntip Rojanasunan, former chief of the Central Institute of Forensic Science. The buzz, locally, in Thailand, and around the world, is that the two convicted men were innocents railroaded into confessing a crime they did not commit. Torture is alleged to have been a key to their confessions.

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