Parents of British Man Killed at Jive Festival Still Seeking Justice

 | Thu 28 May 2015 05:45 ICT

CityNews – Parents of a British man killed by an allegedly high driver in Pai during the Jive festival express dismay at Thai judicial system after 100 days with no arrests made, despite the driver admitting his wrongdoing.

The car which collided head on with the bike.
The car which collided head on with the bike.

On the night of January 18, a car driven by 30-year-old Thanandorn Pratangkam hit a motorcycle on a Pai road, killing the driver, 25-year-old British man Thomas Treharne Cottrell and seriously injuring his girlfriend 28-year-old Punika Ariyakul.

He was immediately released by police before any alcohol or drug tests could be carried out.

Earlier this month Cottrell’s parents, Nicholas Edward Cottrell and Susannah Jane Cottrell joined in a 100 day merit-making ceremony at Wat Chaimongkon and floated their son’s ashes in a river, according to Buddhist funeral tradition.

However, the legal case has stagnated and despite calls for assistance from the British embassy, the driver has yet to be brought to justice.

Cottrell’s parents also submitted documents to the Office of Mae Hong Son Public Prosecution, Pai branch, to ask for the prosecution to continue.

The driver, Thanandorn Pratangkam, admitted to his crimes for careless driving causing injury and death and has been formally prosecuted but no further action has yet to be taken.

Thanandorn Pratangkam photographed outside the prosecutors office
Thanandorn Pratangkam photographed outside the prosecutors office

The Cottrells also added that after the accident, the suspect never showed any remorse nor took care of the affected families.

The Cottrells do not want any compensation but demand justice is served.

However, no formal arrests have been made and the driver has yet to apologise to the parents of both families affected. Both parties claim he has expressed no shame and has never even visited the deceased to pay respects – a tradition in Thai Buddhist belief.

Tom's mother floating his ashes in a river
Tom’s mother floating his ashes in a river

The Cottrells told CityNews that when looking at other road accidents causing death, the guilty party is almost certainly given a jail sentence, and have expressed concern towards the suspension of this case.

They expressed understanding that each case is different, but with allegations of drug involvement and how the toxicity reports have now ‘gone missing’, both his parents and Punika’s family are extremely worried the case will come up short.

Thanandorn was seen partying at a club in Chiang Mai days after the incident.

A preliminary court case is set for June 4, but the whole process is expected to take up to a year before any rulings are made.

The Cottrells have asked for the case to follow the course of law and to see justice served to those responsible.