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Crime

Thai police say Burmese workers confessed to killing 2 British tourists

On Friday, police in Thailand announced the arrest of two unidentified workers from neighboring Myanmar for the murder of two British tourists on the small southern beach island of Koh Tao, or Turtle Island. David Miller, 24, and Hannah Witheridge, 23, were discovered Sept. 15 on the beach not too far from their hotel; they had been beaten on the head and face with a hoe and Witheridge had been raped. Police say that the two Burmese men confessed to the murders and rape, and that DNA evidence from the crime scene matched the men.

Thailand has a history of pinning crimes on and coercing confessions from its 2.5 million migrant workers, especially those from Myanmar, Reuters reports, but deputy national police chief Lieutenant General Jaktip Chaijinda insisted that's not the case here. "In this sort of case we usually do not take risks and have never thought of bringing in a scapegoat because this is a case with interest worldwide and in Thailand," he said Friday. "We want to clarify this case as soon as possible so that our tourism industry can bounce back."