The Philosopher’s Wife –


As far as murders go the death of  Natsaporn Yongyingpoon could hardly have been more brutal. The 23-yr-old farm girl from North Eastern Thailand was beaten relentlessly for four hours before the murderess executed. The coup de grace was a wok full of boiling oil.

Yet when Yongyingporn, nicknamed Sorn’ (far left) was brought into Buri Ram hospital, where doctors could do little to save her life, nobody questioned how she had come to have such brutal injuries.

And no police report indicated any body else might have had a hand.

Andrew Drummond was brought in after a foreigner who knew the dead girl from a bar in Bangkok became suspicious her disappearance.

Within two days Andrew Drummond, tracking down relatives employed in the city’s infamous night scene,  had found a witness to the murder.

The murder had been carried out by Noi (Sineenut)Yuiram, a former bar girl, married to an American professor and philosopher.

The reason was that Natsaporn, nicknamed Sorn, she believed, had slept with her Thai lover.

After the murder she had called her American husband Jack Clontz in Japan, where he was teaching at the Maebashi Kyoai Gakuen College in Guma Prefecture near Tokyo.

The house that Jack built

She said she had been in a fight and needed 210,000 Thai baht because she had injured someone while trying to defend herself.

Jack Clontz, 62, the author of such treatises as ‘Heiddegger’s interpretation of the role of transcendental imagination in Kant’s critique of pure reason’  duly sent the cash.

Noi offered the Sorn’s bereaved parents 30,000 Thai baht compensation. But when they protested she increased it to 100,000 and pocketed the change.  Thus a price had been settled and the murder had been covered up using Jack Clontz’s wealth.

Jack Clontz’s money was used to cover up a murder. One of these girls bravely testified in court.

‘As her husband it was my duty to support her, but when I came back to Thailand it was clear the girl was not just injured. She had been murdered by Noi.

‘Before she died she was beaten and tortured for four hours. Her head was repeatedly bashed against a wall. Her hair was cut off with scissors and finally she was dragged outside and boiling oil was poured over her,’ he told Andrew Drummond later.

Clontz was soon on plane out again fearing he might be the next one to go.

He may have been right. Although he spoke eight languages Thai was not one of them.

Noi Yuiram

Witnesses described how Noi also openly planned the murder of her husband with her Thai lover as he sat in front of her on the sofa watching television in the house he had bought for her outside Buri Ram. (Jack thought the Thai lover was just a family friend).

Andrew Drummond returned to Buri Ram with one of the witnesses and a lawyer from the Foundation for Women. Meanwhile Jack Clontz had been persuaded by his wife to pay for his defence and other related matters.

Buri Ram Police Captain Borit Phromyotan duly arrested Noi for the murder after other witnesses also gae statements. She was sentenced to just three years in jail but was released on bail to appeal her case.

The lost her appeal.

Jack finally went off in search of a new wife.

Scholar: My wife is a murderer by Andrew Drummond published in the Nation September 18 2002

About the Author

Andrew Drummond

Andrew Drummond is a British independent journalist and occasional television documentary maker. He is a former Fleet Street, London, journalist having worked at the Evening Standard, Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday, News of the World, Observer and The Times.

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