A British couple Stefan Brown and Rachel Turner Brown arrive on the Thai island of Koh Chang absolutely ecstatic about their south east Asian trip.

“Yay….2 flights and 3 hours in Dubai later….arrived in Bangkok airport to mega heat……feeling super exhausted but terrifically excitables (sic) in Thailand…..7 weeks of way hay HAAAAYYYYYY! Thailand, Laos, Cambodia & Vietnam here we come!” wrote Rachel on a social media website.

Within a week one drowns in a swimming pool and the dream becomes a nightmare.
But according to police quoted in the Bangkok Post the couple from Wolverhampton had a fierce quarrel.

The officer quoted Mr. Brown as saying that he had an argument with Turner around 9 or 10pm that night and went to bed. A staff member alerted him about the drowning in the morning.

“Pol Lt Auraungkoon said hotel employees saw the couple having a fierce quarrel on their room balcony before both went inside.  They may have been under the influence of alcohol when they quarreled as several empty bottles were found in their room.”

We should hold it here for a minute before we conclude that Stefan did his wife in.
I have a rule of thumb here and that is to take extremely cautiously anything a Thai policeman announces, especially when a tourist dies, and especially for the first few days.

And secondly most mysterious deaths in hotels in Thailand have usually been down to other causes; faulty electric wiring near a swimming pool, for one, mysterious bug and gas deaths two others. The country has had an epidemic of people dying in hotels mysteriously seven in Chiang Mai in a short space of time.

And Koh Chang keeps its secrets.

On my visits to Koh Chang I have normally been checking on dodgy property developers. But in one memorable case I went to see a British couple who appear to have been given the date rape drug Dormicon and had taken part, semiconscious but not in control of their actions, but without their co-operation in an orgy in which they were violated.

After waking up two days later and seeking help they decided to flee the Thai police and underwent counseling at ‘The Haven’, the Met Police, Barts and NHS Sexual Offences Referral unit at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel. They also went under forensic analysis under the Met Police Sapphire Project.

Of course I am not suggesting anything like this happened to Rachel, There is probably quite a simple explanation. But whether Thai police find it or not is another matter.


  1. Can good leadership come from a corrupt system? Until Thai society realizes it's feudal patronage system only breeds a greedy predator class of officials and public servants, nothing will change. Until Thailand develops a more egalitarian society where the rule of law is applied equally and fairly to all, there will be ongoing disunity. Until the corrupt criminals that infest Thai politics are weeded out, democracy will just be a pipe-dream. Until we see people in shiny uniforms publicly scrutinized and punished if breaking the law, Thailand will always just be a third world banana republic where the poor are constantly robbed by their corrupt leaders. In terms of corruption, I think Thailand has actually got worse in the last 20 years. A lot worse actually.

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