Former S-League player dies in Bangkok; boss held

Mr Ramasamy beside a picture of his son, former S-League footballer Siva, at his Bishan home yesterday. He said his son's boss in Thailand was arrested for allegedly causing grievous hurt and was out on bail. Another man was also arrested and investi
Mr Ramasamy beside a picture of his son, former S-League footballer Siva, at his Bishan home yesterday. He said his son's boss in Thailand was arrested for allegedly causing grievous hurt and was out on bail. Another man was also arrested and investigations by Thai police are ongoing.ST PHOTO: JALELAH ABU BAKER

Bangkok-based former S-League footballer Sivaneswaran Ramalingam, 29, died in the Thai capital at the weekend and his family is trying to figure out what happened.

His father, Mr Ramasamy Ramalingam, 60, a private bus driver, said he got a call from Bangkok in the wee hours last Saturday to inform him that his son was dead.

He flew to Bangkok on the first flight available that day at 7.20am.

Mr Siva had died by manual strangulation, according to his death certificate seen by The Straits Times.

Mr Siva once played for Sengkang Punggol, now Hougang United. He was based in Thailand for about 15 years, first as a soccer player, then as a sales manager at a nail and spa company.

 

Mr Ramasamy told The Straits Times at his Bishan flat yesterday that Thai police showed him a re-enactment video of what they saw on arrival at Mr Siva's condominium unit. "There was a man holding his legs, and another man holding Siva in a chokehold," he said.

The Thai police also told him that his son's boss Kevin Maes, a Belgian, had been arrested for allegedly causing grievous hurt and was out on bail. Another man was also arrested and investigations are ongoing, Mr Ramasamy said.

Another shock for Mr Ramasamy was that the woman whom he had known to be his son's girlfriend of five years turned out to be still married to Mr Maes. Ms Sarah Gieghase was the one who had called him to tell him "Siva is gone", said Mr Ramasamy, who has three other sons.

Mr Siva, who spoke fluent Thai, and Ms Gieghase, a Belgian, have a 3½-year-old son. Friends and family said the couple had a stormy relationship and had spats over their son and business issues.

Mr Siva's body was flown back to Singapore on Sunday. A wake was held on Monday.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 01, 2016, with the headline 'Former S-League player dies in Bangkok; boss held'. Print Edition | Subscribe