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Sunday, 11 August, 2002, 09:13 GMT 10:13 UK
Thai woman eaten by crocodiles
Crocodile
The enclosure contained more than 100 crocodiles
A woman in Thailand has killed herself by jumping into a pit full of crocodiles in front of scores of horrified tourists.

She scaled a high fence and jumped into the concrete enclosure at the Samut Prakarn Crocodile Farm on the outskirts of the capital, Bangkok.


She just jumped into the pond without a word. The moment the crocodile grabbed her body, she even hugged onto him

Park guide Thanes Wiriyaporn
Visitors looked on in shock as the woman was dragged into a pond and dismembered.

"She did not cry or scream when she was bitten," said a tour guide. "It happened so quickly. Nobody could do anything."

Police said the woman left a suicide note in which she complained about her husband and apologised to members of her family.

Gruesome death

The woman, identified in media reports as Somjai Setabul, was seized by one crocodile and then swarmed by more than 100 others, witnesses said.

Workers at the park were only able to look on helplessly as she was torn apart. They were finally able to retrieve her body about 20 minutes later.

Crocodile
The woman chose feeding time to throw herself into the enclosure
Park guide Thanes Wiriyaporn said the incident took place around feeding time, when the tourists were purchasing buckets of chicken parts to give to the crocodiles.

"Just right in front of me, she just jumped into the pond without a word. The moment the crocodile grabbed her body, she even hugged onto him," he said.

Charoon Yangprapakorn, one of farm's executives, insisted that the park has very strict safety measures.

The last suicide happened 10 years ago, but every year there have been several attempts which park officials have been able to prevent, he said.

"But this woman showed no sign of depression or absentmindedness like the others did, so nobody noticed her at all."

The Samut Prakarn Crocodile Farm, just south of the capital, is a popular tourist attraction and claims to be the biggest such park in the world, housing 60,000 crocodiles.

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 ON THIS STORY
Larry Jagan reports
"Witnesses say the woman did not utter a sound"
See also:

25 Jun 01 | Asia-Pacific
03 Sep 01 | Asia-Pacific
15 Jun 99 | Americas
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