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Police ‘Big Joke’ accuses PM Srettha of malfeasance

Police 'Big Joke' accuses PM Srettha of malfeasance

Deputy national police chief Surachate Hakparn made allegations against Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin on Monday, claiming malfeasance in his suspension, which hindered his chance of becoming the next national police chief.

Pol Gen Surachate, also known as Big Joke, lodged his complaint at the Office of the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) and addressed it to NACC secretary-general Niwatchai Kasemmongkol. He further elaborated on his grievances during a press conference held at the NACC.

Surachate informed the press that the prime minister had initially reassigned him to the PM’s Office pending a 60-day investigation into his alleged involvement in money laundering linked to the BNK Master gambling website. Following this, he was ordered back to the Royal Thai Police Office. However, on April 18, he was suspended from duty, and the subsequent day, police interrogators forwarded his case to the NACC.

Surachate emphasized that had his case been sent directly to the NACC initially, he would have been presumed innocent until the NACC reached its findings, preventing his transfer out of the police force according to the law.

He alleged a coordinated effort to persecute him and stated that being suspended had afforded him time to pursue legal action against his adversaries. He warned, “Please be prepared.”

Additionally, Surachate urged the NACC to investigate potential malfeasance by the police interrogators involved in the online gambling case against him, suggesting that they acted to thwart his candidacy for the position of national police chief.

Highlighting his seniority among candidates to succeed the incumbent Pol Gen Torsak Sukvimol upon his retirement in September, Surachate claimed that a faction aimed to obstruct his advancement within the police ranks.

Prime Minister Srettha later defended the suspension, stating that the Royal Thai Police Office had recommended it and denying any wrongdoing. He asserted that the suspension adhered to the law and was impartial.

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