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The mother of British Ben Harrington, 32 who died on Koh Tao in 2012 has started a petition demanding the British Government investigate the deaths of Britons in Thailand.
Ben died while holidaying on the popular island of Koh Tao that has been dubbed ‘Death Island’ by international media outlets and social media users. Police in Thailand told Mrs Harrington her son’s death was the result of a road traffic collision after his motorbike crashed into an electricity pylon. Unconvinced Mrs Harrington has spent years fighting for information from the Thai authorities about her son’s death, including submitting Freedom of Information requests to the foreign and commonwealth office.
She says she has been left with more questions than answers, much like the families of others who have lost their lives on the island and have no confidence in the police investigations, including the families of Luke Miler, Nick Pearson, Christina Annesley, Elise Dallemagne and the mother of Valentina Novozhenova whose daughter is still missing from the island.
“My son was killed on Koh Tao, Thailand in 2012, they say he had ‘an accident’ but things have never added up, the coroner in the UK would not use the words ‘accident’, statistics from the Farang Death Database, out of 562 deaths between 2008-2017, 95 are British, 87.37% are male, 106 are reported as road traffic accidents, 56 from falling and 89 from drowning, the Crime Suppression Division have now taken over the investigation into the latest death on the Island, the British Government need to take notice of what is happening to our children on these island and do something regarding further investigations into their deaths, Theresa May, this needs to be looked into NOW before any more lives are taken” The petition, that so far has 578 supporters will be delivered to British PM Theresa May.
The internet and international community have been very vocal in voicing their concerns about shoddy police investigations, the extraordinary amount of deaths on the island and the use of what is commonly believed to be scape goats in the case of the murders of British Hanna Witheridge and David Miller in 2014. Burmese migrant workers Zaw Lin and Wai Phyo were sentenced to death for the murder that they maintain they had nothing to do with. Social media users believe them and are convinced the murders were committed by a local man of influence and are suggesting, in light of more and more deaths, that a serial killer is at large on the island. Local authorities and police have responded by threatening to sue the Samui Times for defamation of the island and computer crimes, and blame this publication for the decline in tourism in the area. The Samui Times is yet to be contacted by the police or local authorities in regards to the charges the other media outlets have reported have already been submitted.