The Unresolved Case of the Dismembered Surgeon on Koh Phangan

murder thailand

Spanish Chef Admits to the Crime

On the scenic island of Koh Phangan in Thailand, a tragic murder shocked the community as the dismembered body of a Colombian surgeon, Edwin Arrieta Arteaga, was found. Daniel Sancho Bronchalo, a 29-year-old Spanish chef and the son of a famous Spanish actor, confessed to the crime after being taken into custody.

A Relationship Turns Deadly

According to Deputy National Police Chief Surachate Hakparn, Sancho and Arrieta, 44, were in a relationship that went sour. The two arrived in Thailand separately, with Sancho arriving on July 31 and Arrieta the following day. They had booked separate hotel rooms and arranged to meet on Koh Phangan on August 2. It was on that day that Sancho brought Arrieta to his room and killed him.

Premeditation and Evidence

Pol Gen Surachate stated that the crime appears to be premeditated, as Sancho bought a 20-centimeter-long chopping knife, large garbage bags, liquid detergent, and rubber gloves on August 1. In the suspect’s room, police discovered traces of heavy-duty cleaning in the bathroom, sink, and refrigerator. Bloodstains, tissue, fat, and hair were also found in the drains, believed to belong to the victim.

Sancho confessed to killing Arrieta, cutting his body into 17 pieces, and disposing of the remains in the sea and a rubbish dump on the island. Local residents discovered some body parts in a sack at the dump on August 3.

The Search for Missing Parts

Deputy National Police Chief Surachate Hakparn reported that nine of the 17 body parts, including the right arm, left leg, and torso, remain unaccounted for as the investigation continues. Sancho initially denied any involvement in the crime, but later admitted it after intense questioning by the police.

Motive Behind the Murder

Media reports indicate that Sancho wanted to end the affair with Arrieta, but the latter threatened to reveal intimate photos online if he did so. Concerned about the potential impact on his family in Spain, the chef reportedly decided to take action and commit the crime.

Ongoing Investigation and Community Impact

The gruesome murder has undoubtedly affected the community on Koh Phangan, known for its picturesque landscapes and full moon parties. The police continue to search for the missing body parts while locals remain on edge due to the horrific crime that occurred in their idyllic tourist destination.