On Monday 25 October 2010 the Odekerken family arrived in Pattaya.
By the end of the afternoon the family met up at their hotel with Mr. Peter van Zanten, who was to attend the Marisa Prommana trial of Tuesday 26 October on behalf of the Dutch Embassy in Bangkok. Mr. Peter van Zanten pointed out that he was not entirely familiar with the Jules Odekerken case. He works for the Economic Department of the Embassy, has lived in Thailand for thirty years and speaks Thai fluently. Working for this Economic Department, he met Jules Odekerken many times in the past and thought very highly of him.
Mr. Peter van Zanten stayed that evening and night at the same hotel as the Odekerken family and they discussed the case, and had a very pleasant dinner that evening.
The next morning Mr. Van Zanten and eight family members were driven under police escort to The Pattaya Provincial Court, where they were expected at nine a.m. .
There was a lot of confusion between nine and ten. The public prosecutor turned out to have been replaced and his successor knew very little about the case. (This explains why the lawyer for the Odekerken family, Mr. Ratpratan, had had problems contacting the original public prosecutor during the last few weeks.)
It was still unclear whether Marisa would turn up and whether the court case would actually take place on that very same day.
At about ten o’clock Marisa entered the courtroom in the company of her children’s previous nanny, Na. As soon as Marisa noticed that the family were there, she turned her face away and avoided any eye contact with the family. She kept looking down and hiding her face in a handkerchief.
Zamira had to take the oath at the witness stand.
Zamira was first interrogated by the public prosecutor, then by one of Mr. Ratpratan’s colleagues and then by one of Marisa’s lawyers, and finally, once again, by the public prosecutor and Mr. Ratpratan’s colleague.
In the beginning Zamira had to answer some general questions concerning her name, address, how she was related to Jules and Marisa and that she represented Jules’ mother in the courtroom.
Zamira had compiled a photo-album at home with various pictures showing that Marisa was totally integrated and accepted in the Odekerken family. The judge ( a young woman, who regularly looked at Jules’ mother) was very interested in the album and regularly leafed through it during the session.
The photo album was added to the files by the judge.
Marisa’s lawyer elaborately interrogated Zamira about Jules’ mother’s motives to start this trial with the public prosecutor. He suggested several times that the Odekerken family were after Jules’ inheritance.
Zamira, however, kept her cool and stated
- that there was absolutely no truth in that suggestion.
- that all of Jules’ money had already been spent in Thailand on his house and on business matters.
- that all of his possessions were on Marisa’s name, because foreign people are not allowed to have any possessions to their name in Thailand.
- and that the Odekerken family’s only motive is that justice be done to Jules.
The second point about which Marisa’s lawyer kept interrogating Zamira, was who had actually started this trial: Jules’ lawyer Mr. Ratpratan Tulatorn or the Odekerken family?
Zamira then referred to her mother and pointed out that it had been Jules’ mother Anna Arnold Bik who had started the trial with the public prosecutor.
At about twelve o’clock noon Zamira’s interrogation was ended.
During the morning session three police officers were present all the time. Under the police escort of a car and four motor cyclists the Odekerken family went back to the hotel for a quick lunch.
At half past one p.m., a smaller delegation of the Odekerken family went back to the courtroom, where Jules’ neighbour Mr. Praphan made his testimony. He stated that he had seen Marisa’s car at the time of Jules’ murder (he had been an eye witness of Jules’ murder.) on the premises of their home. Mr. Praphan, a man of simple social background, was clearly intimidated by Marisa’s lawyer, who interrogated him in a very loud way.
At the end of the day the Odekerken family travelled to Bangkok. The next day they were received by the Dutch Ambassador Mr. Tjaco van den Hout and Mr. Peter van Zanten at the Dutch Embassy and the events were evaluated.
The Odekerken family have positive feelings about the court sessions of 26 October and these feelings are shared by their lawyer, Mr.Ratpratan
Wednesday 27th October 2010 was also a court session day on which various witnesses have been heard. The Odekerken family were not present there.
On November 29th 2010 a female friend of Marisa’s and Na,the previous nanny for Marisa’s children will have to witness.
Mr. Ratpratan expects that the judge will set a date for a final sentence after this session. He shares the Odekerken family’s hope that this case will be concluded by the end of the year and that justice will be done.