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Farang falls to his death from 15th floor of condo

http://www.thaivisa.com/index.php?514&backPID=514&begin_at=640&swords=Source&tt_news=22

29-11-02

Foreign resident, 44 year old Sean Parlaman fell to his death from the 15th floor of Star Beach Condominium in Jomtien last Saturday afternoon.

The incident occurred after Pattaya criminal investigators paid a visit to Parlaman to question him on allegations of child abuse - a case which was still pending in court.

Parlaman agreed to meet with officers in the lobby of the condo block. Officers requested that he accompany them to the police station for an interview.

Parlaman told police he wanted to give his condo and car keys to a friend before he left with the officers. Police waited in the lobby while Parlaman went upstairs to hand over his keys to the friend. Shortly after Parlaman departed, the officers who were still waiting in the lobby heard a loud thud outside the building. Rushing to investigate, they found Parlaman's shattered body on the ground.

Sean Parlaman said he had been working with street children who were stuck on the merry-go-round of drugs and prostitution and hung out in South Pattaya's Sunee Plaza. He said he wanted them to find a better way of life and tried to recommend they connect with a number of charity organizations in the city and the region who are set up to help them.

Despite being told by a long-term resident, "If you think that these organizations have no connection with the police and the places you're trying take them out of then you are naive," he continued his work and in the end it was these organizations who accused Parlaman of sexual abuse against the children he had been helping.

On September 30th Parlaman was arrested and charged with sexually molesting a 12-year-old child attending the Fountain of Life Center.

The accusations, which he adamantly denied until his death, came from two people: a teacher posing as the child's guardian and the manager of the street kids' home in Banglamung.

Parlaman was accused of putting a bruise on the young boy's neck. But Parlaman said it occurred while the boy was playing with his friends.

The child, whose family is very poor was taken away and placed in a welfare institution. Distressed and wanting to go home the child was allegedly forced to admit to the incident in court.

Out on bail, Sean Parlaman continued to protest his innocence. In a letter to this office Sean Parlaman wrote; "After the October 30th deposition the questioning went badly for the prosecution, so the police pulled out the phony complains against me from May where the bar owner (Daeng) used some of his kids to 'get even' with me over his arrest."

The case was reported in this publication earlier this year with Daeng, the apparent owner of what was once called the Sports Bar in Sunee Plaza being arrested for the propagation of child prostitution. The Sports Bar has since changed its name with Daeng still operating the establishment.

Sean's letter continues; "According to someone who has tried to help me and who has 'connections' the boys were being told if they deny those earlier reports (from May) they can be jailed for a long time for perjury."

The reports from May were originally quashed with no hard evidence to support the case. But the later indictment was still under process in the court system and even if Parlaman was found innocent from the September 30th charges he would face another three charges of child abuse held over from May.

This entire situation draws similarities to a case in Chiang Rai, where a volunteer Swiss social worker, Ralph Frishknect was accused of sexually abusing children at the Childlife Center. Reports say that Frishknect had apparently informed several donors regarding misappropriation of funds and was subsequently persecuted, with charges not being made public. The case ended when Ralph was found hanging in his jail cell amidst accusations of police impropriety.

A number of people in Pattaya who knew Sean Parlaman revealed similar improprieties, saying that local police officers appeared as if they were on a witch-hunt, breaking into his apartment and conducting illegal investigations without the occupant's knowledge. Parlaman wrote; "...I want to tell you that I have never abused, exploited or in any other way harmed or taken advantage of anyone. I know that this story will not end up well for me..."

The story has ended and not well. Police have informed the court system that the case be dropped and closed because the accused is dead.

Sean Parlaman's body was transferred to the police forensic institute in Bangkok for an autopsy.

Source: Pattaya Mail, Nov 29, 2002