Aunt of slain rights advocate Chaiyaphum Pasae arrested for drug charges

Police yesterday arrested the aunt of the late Lahu rights advocate Chaiyaphum Pasae for drug charges.

Miss Chantana Pasae, 20, was accused of involving in the slain rights advocate's drug gang.

She was picked up from her home in Chiang Mai's Chiang Dao district for questioning along with her friend Ms Nawa Jahu.

The arrest came after police arrested Chaiyaphum's guardian who confessed to drug trafficking. The guardian is the brother of Ms Nawa

Police said Chantana was involved because she was the person who transferred money to her nephew Chaiyaphum, while Nawa was the person who delivered meths to Chaiyaphum before he was shot dead by soldiers trying to escape a road checkpoint on March 17.

The extrajudicial killing of rights advocate Chaiyaphum sparked outcry by human rights group with claim that he was innocent and not involved in drug trafficking.

But police affirmed they have strong evidence the rights advocate was involved in drug trafficking.

Chaiyaphum, 17, was killed on the morning of March 17 after soldiers allegedly found methamphetamine pills in his car and tried to arrest him. The soldiers shot him as he tried to resist arrest.

Soldiers say 2,800 methamphetamine pills were found in the car. Chaiyaphum allegedly threw a hand grenade and tried to flee, prompting soldiers to fire in self-defence.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)