CHONBURI — Police said Tuesday they’re looking for three armed men, including one dressed as a cop – who attempted to abduct a man from his home in Chonburi.
Thanongsak Lueng-on, 30, told reporters the men identified themselves as policemen and ordered him to go with them to a police station for questioning. Thanongsak said the men, who carried handguns, only fled after realizing that his sister-in-law filmed the altercation, footage of which she posted on social media.
“I am very scared,” Thanongsak said Monday after filing charges at Phan Thong Police Station. “I never had problems with anyone.”
Station chief Preecha Somsathan said he’s not sure whether the men in the video were policemen as they claimed.
“We’re checking to be sure,” Col. Preecha said by telephone Tuesday. “If they were real cops, they would have come with search warrants. But they didn’t.”
In the video, a man wearing a police vest and two others in civilian clothes were seen manhandling and shouting at Thanongsak to come with them. “Come come come!” one of the men said, as Thanongsak struggled. “Let’s talk later.”
“Stop filming!” one of the men said to the person recording, waving a handgun.
Preecha said he checked with his own station and other precincts in the region, and none said their officers were the ones seen in the video.
According to the police colonel, Thanongsak’s brother is in prison on a drug-related conviction, and the three men told Thanongsak they wanted to talk to him about his brother. He added that police checked a license plate number reportedly used by the perpetrators turned out to have been forged.
Thanongsak told reporters he was at home with his wife, his children and his sister-in-law when the three men broke into his home.
“Come with me right now!” he said they yelled. The men also tried to take his necklace and iPhone but eventually fled the scene after his sister-in-law, Chatmanee Ponpao, started filming the incident.
The video had been shared more than 13,000 times by Tuesday afternoon.
Chatmanee said she believed the video saved Thanongsak from being kidnapped.
“If I didn’t film them, and my brother-in-law was taken away, who would have helped us?” Chatmanee told reporters Monday.