A 26-year-old Canadian drug suspect wanted by the US government and recently arrested by Thai authorities has hanged himself in his cell while being detained and waiting for his extradition to the US.
A duty officer discovered the dead Alexandre Cazes, 26, during his morning patrol at the Narcotics Suppression Bureau Division 1 in the Lak Si district in Bangkok. Pol Maj Gen Surasak Kunnarong, the commander of the Narcotics Suppression Bureau Division 1, confirmed the incident in a press conference at 14:00 the same day.
Deputy superintendent Pol Lt Col Suban Atiset, who leads the investigation into the case, told reporters that the duty officer who found Mr Cazes had been patrolling the detention room at 07:00 when he noticed a towel hanging from the toilet door of Mr Cazes’ cell.
“He saw the towel but could not see Mr Cazes himself when he approached his cell,” Pol Lt Col Suban described the events. “He then unlocked the door and found Mr Cazes lying dead in the toilet section of his cell.”
After notifying his superiors at the bureau and Thung Song Hong Police, located less than one kilometre away, investigators, forensic police and a medical examiner from Police General Hospital arrived to inspect the scene.
Investigator Pol Capt Saharat Luangsiritonsin described the scene: “Mr Cazes lie on the tiled floor of the toilet area of his cell which is blocked from view by a wall about one metre high. He wore a grey t-shirt and black boxer shorts. A dark-blue towel was wrapped around his neck.”
Pol Capt Saharat said Mr Cazes had been detained in his cell alone. The towel and other items found in the cell were his personal belongings. “At 07:00, he asked a female suspect held in the opposite cell for the time, she told us. He then went into the toilet area and hanged himself.” Rescue workers of the Ruamkatanyu Foundation brought the body outside and sent it to General Police Hospital.
US authorities wanted Mr Cazes to face charges for his alleged involvement in the internal drug trade while he was staying in the United States. After authorities in the US had learned that Mr Cazes had fled to Thailand, issued an indictment and the Criminal Court in Bangkok was asked for cooperation and issued the warrant for his arrest (file number 502/5260) on June 30.
Mr Cazes was arrested and detained on July 5 at his house no. 514 in the Private House gated community on Phutta Monthon Sai 3 Rd in Sala Thammasop subdistrict, Thawi Watthana district. On the day of his death, Mr Cazes was due to meet the public prosecutor to arrange his extradition to the US.
According to Pol Maj Gen Surasak, Mr Cazes had been working in Thailand for eight years as a computer programmer. “He was married to a Thai woman. When we contacted her this morning, she had no doubts about his death.”
Reports in the Thai media said Mr Cazes has made a fortune and had been living a luxury life in Thailand. A source of the Bangkok Post later claimed police had impounded Lamborghini cars and three houses worth about 400 million baht in total.
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