Two men sought over Phi Phi deaths
PHUKET: Police are looking for two Portuguese men last seen with the two Canadian sisters found dead under mysterious circumstances at a hotel on Koh Phi Phi last week.
Friday 22 June 2012, 12:59PM
The bodies of Audrey and Noemi Belanger, aged 20 and 26, from Quebec province, were found last Friday (June 15) in their room at Phi Phi Palms Residence Hotel by the maid, showing signs of having died from an extreme toxic reaction.
Police have said that “serious food poisoning” might have been to blame, but the authorities stressed that it was too early yet to pinpoint the cause of the deaths.
The Bangkok Post reported today (June 22) that the Portuguese men are believed to hold clues about the women’s deaths.
Investigators on Thursday checked CCTV footage from cameras at Phi Phi Palms Residence Hotel.
The Post reported the footage, recorded between 1.10am and 1.14am on June 13, captured a male foreigner escorting the sisters back to their hotel room.
A source close to the police investigation said the man was identified as Luciano Tinto, a 30-year-old Portuguese.
The man and his friend of the same nationality stayed at the same hotel as the sisters, the source said. The friend was not identified.
The source said before they were found dead, the two sisters were spotted with the two men at entertainment venues on Phi Phi island.
The source added that the two Portuguese checked out of the hotel and headed for Phuket on the same day the two Canadians died.
Meanwhile, relatives of the sisters arrived yesterday (June 21) at Ramathibodi Hospital in Bangkok to collect their bodies for burial.
Wicharn Priewnim, head of the forensic medicine unit of the hospital, told the Post that toxicology results would be known in one to two weeks.
Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul said yesterday that the Canadian embassy has asked the ministry to coordinate efforts between the two countries to investigate the deaths.
Mr Surapong said the embassy also asked for tissue samples from the bodies to conduct lab tests in Canada.