Thailand carried out the first execution of a prisoner in nearly a decade on Monday, with the lethal injection of a murderer at Bangkok’s Bang Kwang Prison – also known infamously as the ‘Bangkok Hilton’.
Thailand’s last execution was in August 2009
A press statement from Department of Corrections director-general Narat Sawettanan said 26-year-old Thirasak Longji was executed in a process that took place from 3 pm to 6 pm at the maximum security prison. Thirasak was convicted of a murder and robbery that took place in Trang in July 2012, in which he stabbed his victim 24 times and took a mobile phone and wallet.
Thailand is one of 56 countries worldwide to still impose the death sentence, with 2017 data from the corrections department showing there were 502 death row inmates in the kingdom around half of whom were sentenced for drug-related crimes.
Actual executions haven’t taken place since August 2009. The United Nations considers a country to have abolished the death sentence if it has not been practiced for at least 10 years.
Thirasak was the seventh convict executed under a new Justice Ministry regulation issued in 2003 that changed the method of execution from a firing squad to lethal injection, Narat said.
Since 1935, he said, a total of 325 convicts had been executed by Thailand and 319 of these were by firing squad, the last shooting having been in December 2003. The first execution by lethal injection was carried out later the same month.