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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sailor arrested for killing shipmate

Sailor arrested for killing shipmate

F ILIPINO sailor Emilio Sealquil is being held in T-3 prison for the murder of

Thai crewmate Suthee Sangnark, who was found stabbed and floating in Phnom Penh

port.

Chief engineer Suthee was the only Thai among an all-Filipino crew

of the Singapore-owned freighter Hana and police said Captain Cecilio Baruc

failed to report him as missing.

A cigarette seller at the port

befriended by Suthee said that on the day he disappeared he complained of

victimization.

The woman, calling herself Vany, told the Post: "He told

me he would not work for the Hana after this trip because the crew were all

Filipino and they didn't like him because he was the only Thai that worked on

the ship."

Uch Tong, the chief of police at the port, said he became

suspicious and prevented the ship departing because the captain had given him a

report which showed the ship was leaving with one less crew member than when it

arrived.

He said: "I thought that there was something that the captain

wanted to hide."

The captain Cecilio Baruc, denied involvement and said

he simply thought Suthee had jumped ship and was unaware he had been murdered.

According to a police medical report, Suthee was grabbed around the neck

and then knifed in the back and stomach.

After the body was found, Baruc

said he called the crew together. Five men accused Seaquil of the killing but

said they had been too scared to report him.

One said: "We opened a

window and saw Sealquil and Suthee fighting.

"We then saw Sealquil stab

Suthee and push him in the water.

"We yelled 'Why did you do that!' and

he threatened to kill us if we spread the story to others."

The captain

said he knew Seaquil was angry with Suthee after the Thai reported him to the

company for being lazy.

Inside T-3, father-of-two Sealquil denied the

killing.

"I haven't had any problems with Suthee in the eight months I

have been working for the company, he has been very good to me."

Sealquil

says he wants to go home because his wife and two young children depend on

him.

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