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DSI begins probing murder of Japanese girl in Sukhothai seven years ago

The Department of Special Investigation (DSI) today began investigating the murder of a Japanese tourist while visiting a historic park in Sukhothai on November 24, 2007.

japanese girl murdered in ThailandThe opening of the case followed request by the Ministry of Tourism and Sports to the DSI to handle the investigation murder and the DSI has accepted it as a special case.

DSI investigators will today meet the commander of Sukhothai police and the commander of the border patrol police based at Ramkhamhaeng camp for cooperation in collecting DNA samples from 160 border patrol police officers who were commissioned at the camp at the time of the murder seven years ago.

DSI wanted DNA test because DNA test had not yet conducted on these policemen.

The test was intended to dispel public suspicion that the border police might be involved in the murder as earlier autopsy indicated that the knife used to kill the Japanese tourist was a bayonet used only in the military and border police.

DSI police and tourism authorities will also bring the parents of the girl to visit the scene where the murder took place to remember her today.

The parents will also meet DSI chief Mrs Suwana Suwanjuta on Thursday and Justice Minister Gen Phaiboon Khumchaya on Friday to seek justice for their deceased daughter.

The victim, Miss Tomoko Kawashita, 25, from Osaka, was found killed near the Sukhothai Historical Park on November 24, 2007.

She had been seen touring the park, a World Heritage site, on a bicycle rented the day she was killed.

Earlier the deputy commander of Sukhothai police said the police have not given up its effort to hunt down the murderer even though the case had been transferred to the Department of Special Investigation to handle.

Earlier the DSI has come up with a new theory that the victim might have been killed by her murderer using a military knife and not a kitchen knife as earlier thought.

The deep knife wounds on the victim’s throat led the DSI to suspect that she was attacked with a bayonet.

The DSI has revived the case for renewed investigation after Japanese ambassador Shigekazo Sato in February last year raised the case with former national police chief Pol Gen Adul Saengsingkaew.

The ambassador also expressed concern for the safety of some 1.2 million Japanese tourists visiting Thailand annually.

For the past almost six years, there has been no progress about the case although many dozens of suspects were rounded up and eventually released.

Thai PBS

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