A man who used to work as a medical assistant at a cosmetic clinic has confessed to injecting filler material into the buttocks of 33-year-old Athitiya Eiamyai, causing her to fall into a deep coma, police say.
Thanat Natveerakul, centre, who calls himself ‘Dr Pop’, yesterday apologises to Lamiat Ketkan and Rabiab Pinklab, the parents of Athitiya Eiamyai, who fell into a coma after receiving a collagen injection from him. CHANAT KATANYU
Thanat Natveerakul, 24, turned himself in to police last night.
Mr Thanat, who calls himself "Dr Pop", allegedly told police that he is not licensed to perform the procedure, but used to work as an assistant at a skin clinic and had experience giving injections. He resigned from the clinic to start his own business and clients came to him by word of mouth, police said.
Mr Thanat said he had performed the procedure on more than 20 women, many of whom, like Ms Athitiya, worked as product presenters.
His normal service covered the injection of glutathione for whitening purposes and an injection to enlarge the patient's buttocks at a price of 500-1,000 baht. Police say he charged Ms Athitiya 40,000 baht because he claimed to be using an imported filler material, which was earlier reported to be collagen.
Mr Thanat told police he was sorry for harming Ms Athitiya and promised to pay for her medical treatment. He also apologised to Ms Athitiya's parents, who said they cannot blame Mr Thanat for everything because their daughter chose to use his services voluntarily.
Ms Athitiya was injected with the foreign substance at a condominium in Lat Phrao on Sunday and fell unconscious within a few minutes. Doctors said later that her heart had stopped beating and her brain was starved of oxygen for at least four minutes.
Metropolitan Police Bureau chief Pol Lt Gen Kamronwit Thoopkrachang and a representative of the Public Health Ministry said police would definitely press charges against Mr Thanat.
Mr Thanat has been initially charged with offering a medical service without a licence, which has a maximum penalty of three years in jail and a 30,000-baht fine.
He has also been charged with illegally operating an unregistered clinic, which carries a maximum penalty of three years in jail and a 60,000-baht fine.
Ms Athitiya remains in a coma in the intensive care unit at Kluaynamthai Hospital. Doctors have advised the family she is unlikely to recover. A video clip posted on YouTube shows Mr Thanat taking Ms Athitiya to Lat Phrao Hospital's emergency ward on Sunday.
Public Health Minister Witthaya Buranasiri said the Public Health Ministry was very concerned about the increasing number of unlicensed beauty clinics and doctors.
Over the past year more than 300 unlicensed beauty clinics in several shopping malls and communities have been shut down and their operators prosecuted, Mr Witthaya said.
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