Soldier in Thailand jailed after video of alleged prisoner abuse goes viral

The assaults took place during the detention of three suspects who had been arrested during an antidrugs operation

The Army has jailed a soldier for 15 days as an initial step after he allegedly assaulted two suspects in a drugs case whom he detained during an operation on Larn Island near Pattaya on Tuesday, deputy Army spokesperson Colonel Sirichan Ngathon said on Thursday.

The assault allegedly including kicking and beating the two handcuffed suspects with a baton. The incident was recorded and posted on social media by a user who refused to reveal his name out of concern for his safety.

The soldier’s unit, which includes officers from the police and provincial administration officials, was also ordered to cease operating on the island immediately, Sirichan said.

She did not reveal the soldier’s name. She described the assaults as inappropriate personal behaviour, adding that after the clip went viral online, the Army had established a factfinding panel to investigate the incident and verify the details of the alleged beating.

The spokesperson said the assaults took place during the detention of three suspects who had been arrested during an antidrugs operation on the island.

The suspects were taken to an open pavilion on the island, where the solider in question is seen in the video clip kicking and beating two suspects with the baton.

Sirichan said the Army was trying to contact the suspects’ families and the soldier would apologise to them and to the suspects.

The Army as an institution was very sorry for the incident, although the act had been an instance of individual wrongdoing, Sirichan said. – Asia One

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