Woman believed burned alive in Udon

Woman believed burned alive in Udon

Police inspect the body of an unidentified young woman found burned to death in Udon Thani on Saturday morning. (Photo by Yuttapong Kamnodnae)
Police inspect the body of an unidentified young woman found burned to death in Udon Thani on Saturday morning. (Photo by Yuttapong Kamnodnae)

UDON THANI — A young woman whose burnt body was found near a local garbage dump may have been alive when her attacker set her on fire, police said on Saturday.

The motive for the attack is a mystery but it wasn't robbery. A handbag, a smartphone, a ring and some 1,000-baht banknotes were found at the scene.

The body was discovered in the woods near the municipal waste disposal site, about 200 metres from the Nong Na Kham-Sam Phrao Road, said Pol Lt Col Sananchai Morthaisong, a duty officer at the Muang district police station. 

The woman, aged between 15 and 20, had sustained bruises on her neck and the area at the base of her ear had been struck by a hard object. Because her tongue was protruding, police believe she might have been burned alive. 

Pieces of burned jeans, a pink blouse and a bedsheet with ABC letters were found near the body. Officers also found pieces of a partly burned brown handbag, a smartphone, a heart-shaped gold ring, other belongings and some 1,000-baht banknotes.

Sarawut Singphut, 22, a municipal worker at the waste disposal site, said he and other workers spotted black smoke billowing into the sky near the site around 5.30pm on Friday. The smoke lasted about 30 minutes before vanishing. They did not regard it as unusual and did not go to check. The body was discovered on Saturday morning by a local resident.

Pol Col Banchop Seehanawee, acting chief of Muang district police, said officers had yet to identify the victim. The attackers might have used the bedsheet to cover the body of the woman and her belongings before setting them on fire, he added.

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