BANGKOK — The second of two mutilated bodies that recently turned up in the Mekong River belongs to a second missing anti-monarchist in exile, according to a source at the Forensic Science Institute.
The source, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed Tuesday that DNA testing has linked the second body found late last month to a man known as “Comrade Kasalong,” one day after the first was identified as another close aide to Surachai Danwattanusorn, a prominent figure in the Thai republican movement.
On Monday, the son of another figure who had been living in exile in Laos since the 2014 coup said he was told that the other body was that of his father, who went by the nomme du guerre “Comrade Phoo Chana.”
Neither of their real identities are publicly known, but they went missing along with Surachai since earlier in December. Phoo Chana was a hardcore Redshirt supporter who was wanted on weapons charges and fled Thailand following his wife’s arrest in 2014, according to Saowalak Po-ngam, a lawyer familiar with their cases.
The testing has been conducted by the Institute of Forensic Science in Bangkok since the two mutilated bodies were recovered from the Thai side of the river. They were handcuffed, disemboweled and a concrete block had been stuffed into their guts.
Nobody has been able to locate Surachai since his disappearance. His wife Pranee Danwattanasusorn said she last heard from him Dec. 10 and fears he is dead.
Two other Thai fugitive exiles disappeared and were believe murdered between 2016 and 2017.
Police in Nakhon Phanom, where the bodies were recovered, vowed Tuesday morning to find those responsible.
Clarification: An earlier version of this story said one of the two bodies was recovered in Nakhon Phanom province. In fact, they were both found there.