When Nara Pech called family in Canada for the last time, he said he was stuck at the Laos airport.
“They want me to leave the airport,” he said hurriedly, his voice recorded on a family member’s voicemail sometime after he was dropped off at the airport on Jan. 21.
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“They don’t want anybody to know that I’m here. Tell them that the drivers, the taxi drivers, and everything are involved in this. The security guards, everybody. They’re trying to f***ing kill me. I need your help man,” he said, then hung up.
Pech’s family heard the frantic phone calls a few days later. Then came a call from police in Laos, telling them Pech had committed suicide.
For those who knew Sihaknara Pech, born and raised in Edmonton, the story still doesn’t make sense.
“You can hear that he’s afraid and he’s pretty much begging for help,” Sarena Armsworthy said about her brother’s final words.
“I believe he was murdered,” she said, adding that she thinks her brother was attacked by more than one person.
Pech, 28, was declared dead in the early morning hours of Jan. 22.
Laos police found four knives at the scene, which appears to be a restaurant inside the airport, with square tables covered with red tablecloths, surrounded by wooden chairs. On the floor, pools of blood and splatters surround the body.
Warning: This is a graphic crime scene image.
Not happy with the answers coming from the police in Laos, Pech’s family started digging, by first arranging for a private autopsy.
That autopsy, done by a pathologist at the Ramathibodi Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand, revealed Pech was stabbed repeatedly in the chest, had multiple wounds to his neck, including the jugular, and had what appeared to be numerous defensive wounds to his arms and hands.
“He’s just a kid. He’s 28. He’s just starting his life. I don’t know what would have triggered anything for someone to do such a terrible thing to a kid,” his sister said.
Pech was in Laos with friends on a trip to southeast Asia, a trip he took, his sister said, to connect with his roots. At home in Ontario was his high school sweetheart, his girlfriend of 13 years, who he had asked to marry him.
He was at the airport that day because he missed her, and wanted to come home, Armsworthy said.
‘We want answers,’ says family
Pech’s family, dissatisfied with answers from the Canadian government on the police investigation in Laos, has started a petition.
“We want answers. We want action. We want to know what happened,” said Armsworthy, who said the family hasn’t seen surveillance from the airport that day.
“My brother belongs to us – our family. Not them. They have no right to hold that information from us.”
“We’re never going to get Nara back. He’s gone. But we want the truth.”
A statement from the Minister of State, Foreign Affairs and Consular said: “Our thoughts are with the family and friends of a Canadian citizen who passed away in Laos.”
The statement said consular officials continue to provide assistance to the family and work with authorities in Laos, and have asked for a transparent investigation.
Source: Yahoo News / CBC News