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Metropolitan police now are confident to arrest a foreign gang responsible for the brutal murder of a Spanish businessman and dismembering of his bodies in several parts and dumped into the Chao Phraya river.
They speculate that the motive for the crime was theft.
Police identified the Spanish man as Mr David Bernat.
His body parts were apparently dumped into the Chao Phraya River where they have been periodically spotted from January 30–February 3.
So far 7 pieces of the body have been recovered.
Chief investigator Pol Gen Panya Mamen, special advisor to the Royal Thai Police Commissioner, said the police are in possession of Mr David’s fingerprints and DNA records which came about after his relatives gave them to forensic examiners in order to match them with the recovered body parts.
Investigators believe that a gang of criminals had committed the murder of the Spanish national on January 25.
He was believed to have been abducted and was forced to make an almost 4 million baht transfers from his account in Singapore to a local account, the chief investigator said.
Records show that he had been forced to make a number of withdrawals from several ATM machines as well as from a several branches of the Siam Commercial Bank.
“As far as we can we can tell so far, the motive behind the crimes was theft. The victim was apparently forced to make monetary transfers and was killed to gag him. His body was then dismembered and disposed off separately hoping to confuse authorities.”
Yesterday he called a meeting with investigators and set a deadline of 48 hours for the capture of the suspects.
He speculated that the suspects were still at large in the country and had planned their crime in every detail.
He also believed there was more than one suspect and they were well organized and had planned the crime in every detail.
But he was confident that the police will be able to bring the perpetrators into custody very soon.
Investigators looking into the victims travel records have uncovered that Mr. David had entered Thailand on January 19 at around 8.00 am in the morning at Suvarnabhumi International Airport. He was last seen on January 20.
Police investigators yesterday carried out a search of a condominium in Sukhumvit district where Mr David was residing.
While there they discovered a number of incriminating evidence such as bank transfer records and telephone records but believe that the dismemberment did not occur on the premises.
The first severed limb discovered was a right arm which was severed at the shoulder. It was approximately 60 cm in length and as wrapped in a clear adhesive tape from the wrist to the elbow.
It was sighted floating near a boat pier at the rear of the Wat Kharuhabodhi temple in Bang Plat district.
Only one day after the first sighting 3 more human limbs were discovered.
The first was in Nonthaburi province on the outskirts of Bangkok when a lower right leg was found floating at the Wat Tamnak Tai temple boat pier.
A human head that was placed in a black thrash bag wrapped in masking tape was later found floating in the river near the Wat Choeng Laen temple.
The final piece was a hairy chested upper torso found floating around the Upper Wat Pho Thong temple boat pier.
A day following this, an upper right leg was sighted floating underneath the Rama 5 Bridge and a left foot was sighted floating in front of the boat pier of the Wat Kroen temple in Pathumthani province.
The final piece was found today when an upper left leg disposed off in a black thrash bag was also found in Pathumthani province.
Investigators believe that the victim was killed between January 25– 27 and was believed to have been forced to make the monetary transfers before being murdered. The body was then dismembered to make disposal more convenient.