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Chitpas arrest warrant voided: DSI

Posted by pakin On September - 24 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

THE DEPARTMENT of Special Investigations (DSI) yesterday denied cancelling the arrest warrant for sedition charges against Chitpas Tant Kridakon, a former core member of the People’s Democratic Reform Committee and now a police force applicant.

Pol Major Woranant Srilam, director of DSI’s special-case management centre, said she was charged over political rallies and that the agency had accepted the case as a special one on December 17, 2013.

Public prosecutors decided to indict her in May last year, and DSI applied to the court for an arrest warrant. Chitpas later turned herself in and was released on bail.

“Since she surrendered, the arrest warrant is no longer in effect as per Article 68 of the criminal code,” he clarified.

National police chief General Somyot Poompanmuang said yesterday that he had been told that Chitpas turned up for a physical exam and had not withdrawn her application to become an officer under the Patrol and Special Operation Division 191.

He said Chitpas was qualified to apply as a police officer because people fighting lawsuits are considered innocent until the court decides otherwise.

Metropolitan Police Bureau assistant spokesman Pol Colonel Akarak Limsangkat said the bureau would consider aspects such as knowledge, personality, health and qualifications when deciding whether to accept her application.

He said she had passed the first test and undergone a physical check-up on Monday. If she passes the physical test, then a panel would be set up to check her qualifications.

According to directives, qualified candidates must have strong morals, integrity, accept democracy and not create divisions on the national front, he said.

He added that the selection panel would be neutral when considering her application. “The decision must be in line with the public and the police’s needs. Public sentiment will have an impact on the selection panel,” he said.

Chitpas’s application for the 191 post drew protests from a group of police officers believed to have ties with the red shirts.

Nobody will get special treatment: minister

Posted by pakin On October - 24 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Investigation into land-encroachment allegations against ex-DSI chief continues

There will be no preferential treatment for anyone found encroaching on forest reserves, General Daophong Rattanasuwan, the minister of natural resources and environment, said yesterday.

A group of 40 former senators visited Pak Chong district in Nakhon Ratchasima province to investigate allegations that former Department of Special Investigation chief Tarit Pengdith had a property that encroached on reserved forestland.

Daophong said his ministry would first have to verify whether the land in question fell under its jurisdiction.

He added that most politicians who encroached on forest reserves did so by utilising a front man who held the land title on their behalf.

He said he had been aware of the allegations against Tarit from news reports even before he was appointed as minister but he had other duties and could not focus only on this issue.

Cases of people who have been accused of encroaching on forest reserves will be treated equally no matter who they are, he said.

In their examination of land documents, investigators found that Tarit’s plot sat on part of the state-run Lam Takhong self-help settlement project.

Tarit acquired the land while working as a public prosecutor in Nakhon Ratchasima after having a Nor Kor 3 landholding document issued to him by local officials.

The document in question allowed local villagers who were members of the settlement project to make use of its land.

Investigators also found that Tarit occupied another 30 rai (4.8 hectares) of land nearby that was used to build a resort allegedly owned by one of his close relatives.

In a related development, Daophong said a National Land Policy Committee had been created under the order of the PM’s Office Ministry on Wednesday, with Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha to chair the panel.

The committee was tasked with allocating and distributing agricultural land to the poor, the minister added.

No land title will be granted to these poor farmers, however, as this practice in the past had led to farmers selling the land to capitalists, so that many who had been granted such rights no longer have any land.

Instead, said Daophong, the granted land would be held by the village as a common property and the farms operated as cooperatives to ensure sustainability.

Police urged to be fair with ‘men in black’

Posted by pakin On September - 19 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Red-shirt leaders Jatuporn Promphan, Thida Thavornseth and Weng Tojirakarn met deputy national police chief General Somyot Poompanmoung yesterday to call on the authorities to be fair in their actions related to the so-called “men in black”.

After the 30 minute meeting, Jatuporn said he and his group were doubtful about the way the investigation was being handled. Initially, the authorities tried to link the suspects to the death of Colonel Romklao Thuwatham, but later said the so-called “men in black” were arrested for the possession of weapons.

The United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) co-leader also noted that the re-enactment of the attack had taken place at the Khok Wua intersection, which was not where Romklao was killed.

Jatuporn also denied that UDD protesters had resorted to violence in 2010, adding that nobody had the right to kill, no matter which colour he or she wears.

The UDD co-leader also called on police to ensure that suspects are not forced to confess and asked that all cases related to the 2010 red-shirt protests be forwarded to the Department of Special Investigation (DSI). However, he said, he does not know who these “men in black” are and that they should be prosecuted if found guilty, albeit fairly.

Somyot later told reporters that he had assured the red-shirt leaders that the investigation would be conducted fairly, and since the “men in black” case was not political, it would not be forwarded to the DSI.

DSI revamp high on agenda

Posted by pakin On May - 26 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Future chiefs of the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) will likely be appointed by a screening committee to prevent political meddling.

Kittipong Kittiyarak, justice permanent secretary and acting minister, said after a meeting with high-ranking officials that the ministry would propose three urgent agendas to the National Council of Peace and Order (NCPO).

First is to allow underprivileged people more access to justice process, push community justice and set up a justice fund.

Second, the DSI will need to be remodelled, probably after the Royal Thai Police of which chief is selected by a committee instead of by a minister to minimise political interference.

Third, justice process needs to be seriously reformed.

Mr Kittipong, also leader of the Reform Now network, was rumoured to be on the “neutral” prime ministers list.

However, he said he had never been approached for the position.