Thai prosecutors said that the FBI can observe the investigation into the death of US actor David Carradine, as long as it did not interfere with proceedings.
Thai police say they suspect the star of the 1970s television series “Kung Fu” died in a sex act that went wrong after his naked body was found Thursday in his Bangkok hotel room with rope tied around his neck and genitals.
Family appealed to FBI
Police here defended their handling of the case at the weekend, after the 72-year-old’s family met US Federal Bureau of Investigation officials to ask for help to discover exactly how Carradine died.
“The FBI can observe or ask Thai investigators to investigate certain points but it cannot run its own investigation or collect evidence,” said senior attorney general Sirasak Tiypan.
Sirasak said there was no reason to deny such a request by the FBI, adding that Thailand had granted permission for several such observations by US officials in the past.
Bangkok police are still awaiting the results of laboratory tests which will take between three and four weeks before they can make an official conclusion about the cause of Carradine’s death.
Further findings pending
An initial autopsy report revealed that the actor died from a sudden lack of oxygen and his body showed no signs of struggle.
Police Colonel Somprasong Yenthaum, who is leading the probe, said on Sunday he was “confident we are working on the right track” and added that US embassy representatives had witnessed the examination of the hotel room.
Carradine’s body was repatriated early Saturday. The “Kill Bill” star was in the Thai capital to shoot a film called “Stretch” when he was found dead in the wardrobe of his luxury hotel room.
Mark Geragos, a lawyer for Carradine’s brother, Keith, said on Friday that the actor’s family rejected early reports that the actor had committed suicide and had met with FBI officials.