Chalerm: Police can ask for money

Policemen can ask for a gift of money during the Chinese New Year because it is a tradition and is not considered a bribe, Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yubamrung said on Tuesday.

Deputy Prime Minister in charge of security affairs Chalerm Yubamrung (Photo by Pawat Laopaisarntaksin)

Mr Chalerm was responding to questions after a security camera captured three police officers demanding money from an Indian tailor's shop owner surfaced on the internet.

"It is not unusual for police to ask for tae-ear (a red envelope filled with money as a Chinese New Year gift from working age adults). This has been a practice since before I served in the police.

"I don't think a change of regulations is needed because of this," said the former police captain.

However, he said, the three officers were at fault because they wanted tae-ear from an Indian, not a Chinese. The officers would be prosecuted if they demanded bribes or extorted money by making threats.

"I'm not protecting the police because this is a part of society, of tradition," Mr Chalerm said.

Related search: Thai police, bribery, chalerm yubamrung, chinese new year, thailand

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