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  HOME | World (Click here for more)

Spanish Death Row Convict in Thailand Diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder

BANGKOK – Spanish national Artur Segarra, who was given a death sentence for murder of another Spaniard in Bangkok, is undergoing medical treatment after being diagnosed with bipolar disorder, sources close to the case told EFE.

A psychiatrist at the Central Prison of Klong Prem, where the convict is kept, made the diagnosis, after which he prescribed daily medication to Segarra.

The Spaniard maintained he was innocent in a brief statement to EFE on Wednesday, just a day before the completion of two years since his arrest in Cambodia while he fled the Thai authorities for the premeditated murder of fellow Spaniard David Bernat in Bangkok.

A Bangkok court handed down the death sentence to Segarra in April 2017, after finding the arguments of the prosecutor’s office and the police evidence of the homicide valid.

He was also found guilty of 12 other crimes – kidnapping, torture and robbery, among others – with the motive being gaining access to money in the victim’s current bank account in Singapore, according to the sentence.

In November, the defendant’s lawyer, the fourth representing him since his arrest, appealed the sentence.

Segarra plans to add new arguments to his appeal, without disclosing any information about his strategy.

The Court of Appeals has yet to schedule the hearing.

According to the police investigation, Segarra kidnapped Bernat on Jan. 19, 2016 and held him captive for seven days in an apartment he had rented in Bangkok, where the murder took place.

The authorities found the first remains of the victim on Jan. 30 in the Chao Phraya River, and subsequently recovered another six body parts in the water.

The police identified Segarra as the main suspect on Feb. 5, and after being recognized in a restaurant in Surin province he managed to flee to Cambodia, where he was detained two days later and handed over to Thai authorities on Feb. 8.

The investigation teams had found traces of blood, matching with Bernat’s DNA, in the bathroom of Segarra’s apartment and on an electric saw, confiscated from the scene of the crime and used for dismembering the body, according to the investigations.

The last time executions took place in Thailand was in 2009, before an indefinite and unregulated moratorium on the fulfillment of the punishment was imposed.

 

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