Grisly murders fuel online speculation
Yangon police are trying to quell a series of rumours spreading after the quadruple homicide of a former police officer and three of his family members at Mingaladon last week.
YANGON police have sought to quell speculation over the quadruple homicide of a former police officer and three of his family members in Mingaladon township last week, after rumours about possible motives and culprits circulated widely on social media.
The body of 37-year-old U Soe Naung and his 34-year-old wife Ma Cherry Pwint, and sons Maung Han Thura, 13, and Maung Swan Htet Myat, 8, had been found by a neighbour on the morning of August 20. All were reportedly found with visible stab wounds and the bodies were sent to Insein Hospital for postmortem examinations.
One popular version of the story doing the rounds on Facebook was that the killings were related to a thwarted drug bust former officer U Soe Naung had supposedly been involved with. This rumour involved U Soe Naung and three other officers failing to stop a van at a checkpoint, then somehow climbing aboard and clinging to it for quite some distance before it stopped and the driver escaped, leaving behind the vehicle’s cargo of 6 million yaba pills. U Soe Naung was reported to have quit the force out of shame.
In a statement issued yesterday, police said the story was likely an echo-chamber version of a case in which Narcotics Task Force 42 and Mayangone police arrested six people with 640,000 yaba tablets, 44 grams of crystal methamphetamine, 54 grams of opium and K10 million (US$8500). But this case took place on March 3 of this year, and U Soe Naung reportedly resigned from the police force in 2014. The second rumour police sought to address was that of U Soe Aung having accepted a bribe in February when he arrested one Ko Win Ko Oo over firearms possession and having an unlicensed vehicle in Bago Region in February. Police say Ko Win Ko Oo has been cleared as a suspect. Yangon police have distributed a photograph of three men who are wanted for questioning in relation to the case.
The murders are still under investigation and police have appealed to the public for any information.