His girlfriend, who had lived with him previously in the United Kingdom, told police after he went missing on Tuesday, that he appeared to have had a mental breakdown since Sunday and was paranoid that someone was trying to kill him.
The body of a retired UK expat was found in a forested area in Nakhon Ratchasima on Thursday, days after the man went missing while driving home from a holiday with his girlfriend. The couple had made a stop at a petrol station on the 350 km journey from Ko Chang to Chaiyaphum province where they have lived for the last two years.
Police in Nakhon Ratchasima province in northeast Thailand have launched an investigation after recovering the body of a UK expat in Thailand who disappeared from the parking area of a petrol station on Tuesday.
The man, who has not yet been named, was found dead on Thursday after police launched a two-day search for him after his disappearance was reported by his Thai girlfriend.
Travelling home after a holiday
She told police that the pair had been on their way back to Chaiyaphum province in central northeastern Thailand where they live, after a holiday on Ko Chang. The journey was approximately 350km.
She told officers that her partner had, since Sunday last, begun experience hitherto unknown mental issues. She explained that he had suddenly become paranoid that someone was trying to kill him.
Man was missing from the car when his Thai partner returned, strap from her handbag pulled off and taken
On Tuesday, she had left him in the car park of the roadside petrol station after they pulled up on their journey back home. When she returned to the car, she noticed that her partner was missing and that he appeared to have had removed one of the straps from her handbag.
Police investigating the case have revealed that the couple had lived together previously in the United Kingdom. The pair had returned to Thailand two years ago to live in the northeastern region.
The British man was retired and also suffering from Parkinson’s.
Police officer tells reporters that the couple were not married but had a shared bank account
Details of the puzzling case were given to reporters on Thursday by Police Captain Wuttisan Pakaphonmongkol of Udonsap District Police Station where officers are ramping up an investigation after the man’s body was recovered from a forested area on Thursday.
‘He was retired and his girlfriend does not have a job. She was supported by her boyfriend,’ the policeman revealed. ‘The English man was suffering from Parkinson’s disease. His partner said that on Sunday he suddenly became troubled, he started having mental problems. He said that someone was trying to injure him, to kill him.’
Huge rescue operation to locate the UK man
A huge rescue and search operation was launched on Tuesday to locate the UK national including diving units who trawled nearby lakes and the use by police of advanced overhead drones.
Police located the body of the man on Thursday in a densely wooded area some distance from the petrol station.
His body was found near a tree.
Police, at this point, are baffled as to what happened to the man but one theory is that he may have tried to kill himself by climbing the tree. When police located the UK man’s body, there were no signs of a physical struggle or foul play.
Police review CCTV and await a post mortem
The location of the body was a full mile’s walk from where his girlfriend had left him in the car on Tuesday.
‘The body is now at the Maharaj Nakhon Ratchasima hospital to conduct a post-mortem examination,’ Police Captain Wuttisan said on Thursday.
The investigation will involve retracing the movement of the couple up to their visit to the petrol station including the use of CCTV footage from the environs of the station where the British man was last reported alive.