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Big Joke avoids suspension for now

Big Joke avoids suspension for now

The current Deputy national police chief, Pol Gen Surachate Hakparn, has not faced suspension at this point as the Royal Thai Police is in the process of establishing a committee to investigate the allegations against him, confirmed the acting national police chief.

“Every procedure must be properly followed,” expressed Pol Gen Kitrat Panphet to the media before his meeting with Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin at the parliament building on Wednesday.

Two primary issues are under consideration. Firstly, there is the probe into the accusations against Pol Gen Surachate, which reportedly relate to money laundering associated with the online gambling platform, BNK Master. Secondly, there is a disciplinary inquiry that necessitates a committee review.

Following the issuance of an arrest warrant by the Criminal Court on Tuesday evening, Pol Gen Surachate voluntarily surrendered to the police to address the charges. Subsequently, he was granted bail and maintained his innocence when addressing the media.

Presently, Pol Gen Surachate holds an inactive position as per Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin’s directive, who also instructed the sidelining of national police chief Torsak Sukvimol.

A prolonged conflict has existed between the two senior officers, marked by public accusations regarding their alleged involvement with illicit gambling networks.

In order to consider suspending Pol Gen Surachate, certain protocols must be adhered to, as highlighted by Pol Gen Kitrat. These entail the receipt of case summaries from Metropolitan Police investigators and Pol Gen Surachate’s arrest dossier. As of now, these documents have not been received.

Additionally, the Disciplinary Division of the Royal Thai Police is tasked with scrutinizing the reports and forming conclusions for evaluation by Pol Gen Kitrat.

The acting national police chief underscored that Pol Gen Surachate will retain his duties unaffected during the committee’s investigative phase. Any decision on suspension or dismissal will be contingent on the committee’s findings.

Moreover, regulations mandate that the police panel complete its investigation within 60 days, with the possibility of extension upon request.

Simultaneously, lawyer and activist Sittra Biabungkerd furnished details concerning financial transactions linked to illicit enterprises involving three police officers, among them national police chief Pol Gen Torsak Sukvimol, to Move Forward Party leader Chaithawat Tulathon on Wednesday. This information was also forwarded to the Police Complaint Review Board.

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