(RoyalPatriot.com )- On Sunday, CNN International got into a bit of hot water while filming a segment on the massacre at a Thai daycare center after its news crew entered the building to film the crime scene without authorization.
Authorities fined the two CNN reporters involved after it was discovered they had been working in Thailand on tourist visas. However, they were cleared of any wrongdoing for entering the daycare center where over 20 children were killed.
According to deputy national police chief Surachate Hakparn, after police investigated the matter, they determined that the reporters thought they had permission to enter the daycare because they were waved into the building. The reporters were unaware that the person who waved them in did not have the authority to do so.
The reporters were fined 5,000 baht ($133 US) and agreed to leave the country.
Both the journalists and CNN International’s executive vice president Mike McCarthy apologized to Thai authorities and the video of the segment was pulled.
In a statement, McCarthy reiterated that his reporters sought permission to enter but the team “now understands” that the officials who waved them in were not authorized to do so. McCarthy said there had never been any “intention to contravene any rules.”
He apologized for “any distress or offense” the report might have caused and for the “inconvenience to the police at such a distressing time for the country.”
McCarthy stated that CNN stopped broadcasting the segment and had also removed the video from its website.
Last Thursday’s massacre in northeastern Thailand is believed to be the country’s deadliest mass murder. At least 36 people were killed, including at least 24 children.
Authorities immediately began a manhunt for the suspect, later identified by Thailand’s Central Investigation Bureau as 34-year-old Panya Kamrab, a former police officer who had been suspended earlier this year on drug possession charges.