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Missing Canadian, body found in Pattaya

79-year-old man had come to visit girlfriend but vanished from hotel several days ago

The decomposing body of a missing 79-year-old Canadian man was found in a field behind a hotel in Pattaya on Friday.

The body was discovered in the grassy 10-rai field behind the Leelawadee Hotel in tambon Nong Prue of Bang Lamung district, said Pol Capt Phuttharak Sonkhamharn, deputy investigation chief of the Pattaya police station, who was alerted just after noon.

Police, tourist police and rescue workers at the scene said the decaying body emitted a foul smell.

Police believe the man had been dead for several days, local media reported. 

The officers found a white T-shirt and black trousers near the body. They also found a bag containing 300 Canadian dollars (8,400 baht) and a Canadian passport bearing the name of the man, whose identity was withheld pending notification of relatives.

Da Phromthung, 54, the assistant housekeeper at the Leelawadee Hotel, said she had gone to the field to collect morning glory and noticed a bad smell. She initially thought it might be coming from the carcass of a dog. But when she walked closer, she was shocked to see the human body. She immediately alerted police.

According to police, staff at the Twin Resort Pattaya Hotel, about 500 metres away from the area where the body was found, had filed a missing person report with Pattaya police on July 12. The Canadian man reportedly arrived in Thailand on July 6 to visit his Thai girlfriend in Chaiyaphum. He was staying at the hotel and later disappeared mysteriously.

Police investigators examined closed-circuit video but found no clues until the discovery of the body was reported on Friday. The body was sent to the Royal Thai Police Office forensic institute in Bangkok for a post-mortem examination to find the exact cause of his death.

The officers inspected the hotel and found the man’s belongings were still inside the room.

Thai media reported that police had phoned the man’s girlfriend in Chaiyaphum, who told them that he had arrived at Suvarnabhumi airport and gone straight to Pattaya on July 6.

After that, she reportedly said, he could not be reached until police contacted her to tell her that her boyfriend had died.

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Police and rescue workers place the body of a dead Canadian man in a Sawangboriboon Pattaya rescue foundation vehicle in Pattaya on Friday. (Photo: Koson Konchoeng Facebook page)

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