Police Try To Regain Public Trust in Influential Figure’s Case

Pol. Lt. Gen. Jiraphop Phuridej, (second from the left), Commander of the Central Investigation Police, holds a press conference on September 18, 2023.

The case of the highway police officer who was shot dead at the house of an influential man in Nakhon Pathom province on the night of September 6 is still under public scrutiny. Part of the public has no confidence in the work of the police and state officials.

On September 18, the Director General of the Department of Corrections, Ayuth Sintoppant, confirmed that the suspect, Praveen Chanklai, or Kamnan Nok (Kamnan means sub-district headman), who is accused of intentionally killing Pol. Maj. Siwakorn Saibua by ordering his gunman, is indeed in prison.

Police escort Praween Chankhlai, or Kamnan Nok, to the Criminal Court on Sept. 9, 2023.

This confirmation comes after criticism and doubts were raised on social media, which even led to someone aiming to file a complaint with the Ministry of Justice to check the fingerprints of the accused.

The Director General of the Department of Corrections clarified that on September 9, the Department received confirmation from the commander of the Special Prison in Bangkok that Kamnan Nok had entered the prison. Subsequently, the person’s photo, personal data and fingerprints were checked against the judicial transfer document before he was taken to the special prison in Bangkok.

The picture shows Praween Chankhlai, or Kamnan Nok, and Thannachai Mhanmak, the gunman who shot and killed Pol. Maj. Siwakorn Saibua.

The accused is currently in custody to prevent the spread of COVID -19 and is undergoing the prisoner classification process. While he is detained in the special prison, lawyers can visit him every day and relatives can visit him through the online system according to the prison’s regulations. During recent visits, his wife and child have visited him.

Regarding the transfer of this case from the Region 7 Police to the Central Investigation Police in Bangkok, Pol. Gen. Damrongsak Kittiprapas, the national police chief, stated that this is a case related to an influential figure in the region and involves police officers.

Therefore, in order to ensure a fair and transparent process and to increase public confidence in the judiciary, it was decided to transfer the case to the Central Investigation Police (CIB) in Bangkok. This was done on September 14. It also ordered that the police officers involved in the incident be brought to justice.

The crime scene at Kamnan Nok’s residence was cleaned before the police examination.

According to Pol. Gen. Damrongsak, the CIB divides the involved officers into three groups: the six who have already been charged, the 13 who are anticipated to be charged with dereliction of duty under Section 157 and making false statements, and the nine who won’t be.

On Monday, Pol. Lt. Gen. Jiraphop Phuridej, Commander of the Central Investigation Police, presided over a meeting of all Central Investigation Bureau commanders and held a press conference for the first time, following the transfer of the case for inquiry.

The CIB will take action against the corrupt police officers, he said. However, the investigation could take time because Section 157 of the law has a definition or special intent and there are still many things that need to be discussed.

Section 157 of the law states that: Whoever, being an official, wrongfully exercises or does not exercise any of his functions to the injury of any person, or dishonestly exercises or omits to exercise any of his functions, shall be punished with imprisonment of one to ten years or a fine of two thousand to twenty thousand Baht, or both.

Pol. Lt. Gen. Jiraphop also described the framework, which would be implemented in three steps: 1. Following Kamnan Nok’s cash path, online information, and unlawful activities 2. Examine the reasons why Kamnan Nok has won construction bids on numerous projects. We have already discovered many irregularities in this section, and we are accelerating the crackdown on influential people throughout the network.


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