Tangled web behind illegal resort boom
Those occupying national park land in Phuket are using sophisticated methods buoyed by institutional corruption and the collusion _ unwitting or not _ of major banks
Last month, a major operation by forest officials to crack down on illegal resorts in Phuket _ including those located in Sirinat National Park _ was abruptly suspended after the department's chief retired.
former Parks chief Damrong Pidech was known for his tough policies against encroachers.
Following an investigation, local officials from the National Parks, Wildlife, and Plant Conversation Department had found major flaws in the issuance of land ownership documents for almost a dozen resort developments located in protected areas.
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