Red Bull heir case to prosecutors

Police have forwarded the case against Red Bull heir Vorayuth Yoovidhya to the prosecutors, charging him with reckless driving causing death, and fleeing the scene of an accident, deputy Metropolitan Police Bureau chief Anuchai Lekbamrung said.

Forensic police inspect a motorcycle belonging to Pol Snr Sgt Maj Wichian Klanprasert of Thong Lor police station and a Ferrari driven by Vorayuth Yoovidhya, the youngest son of Red Bull executive Chalerm Yoovidhya, following the accident. (Photo by Somchai Poomlard)

Pol Maj Gen Anuchai said the file was handed to prosecutors of the South Bangkok Criminal Court by Thong Lor police investigators on Monday. 

The prosecution will review the evidence and decide whether to indict Mr Vorayuth, he added.

Mr Vorayuth was initially charged with hit-and-run and drink-driving after his Ferrari smashed into the rear of Pol Snr Sgt Maj Wichian Klanprasert's motorcycle before dawn on Sept 3 last year in Bangkok's Sukhumvit area.

Pol Snr Sgt Wichian was killed and his body dragged along the road.

Mr Vorayuth is a grandson of Chaleo Yoovidhya, the late founder of the Krating Daeng energy drink empire, known abroad as Red Bull.

In another high-profile road accident case, the Appeals Court on Tuesday reduced the prison sentence handed down to Kanpitak "Mu Ham" Pachimsawat, the 25-year-old son of a former Miss Thailand, who rammed his car into a crowd at a bus stop six years ago, killing one woman and injuring several other people.

The court ruled Kanpitak was mentally afflicted with bipolar disorder, and reduced his prison sentence to two years suspended. He remains on bail pending an appeal.

Kanpitak was charged with premeditated murder, attempted murder and physical assault in connection with the July 4, 2007 incident.

He drove his Mercedes Benz sedan into the waiting for buses in Bangkok's Watthana district, following a quarrel with the driver of a bus.

The bus driver accused him of deliberately side-swiping his vehicle with the Mercedes-Benz in heavy traffic. The case caused public outrage.

In 2009, the Phra Khanong provincial court sentenced Kanpitak to 10 years and a month in jail, rejecting the claim made by his family that he could not control himself as he suffered from mental problems.

The court blamed Kanpitak's upbringing and said the parents had contributed to his bad conduct.

The Appeals Court ruling, which partially reversed the Criminal Court, was read out in the Phra Khanong provincial court on Tuesday.

The judges ruled  the defendant’s appeal was “partially convincing”. The court said that during the act of committing murder, the defendant was being irresponsible and was unable to control himself because he had a mental illness. 

The court decided to reduce Kanpitak's jail term. It initially reduced the prison sentence to three years, and then further reduced it by a third to two years on the grounds that the defendant had paid compensation that satisfied the injured parties and family of the deceased, and that the plaintiffs did not want to file civil and criminal cases against him. 

The judges said the conclusion about the defendant's mental state while committing the crime had been drawn after they discussed the issue with Kanpitak’s physician and other medical experts including psychologists, social workers, clinical psychologists and nurses.

The meeting concluded the defendant was mentally ill and had suffered from seizures since he was a child. He suffered a bipolar disorder which affected his ability to control himself when he was angry. Therefore the defendant’s actions were involuntarily.

As a result, the penalty on the premeditated murder conviction should be reduced, the court said.

On the assault charge, Kanpitak was sentenced to one month in prison, suspended for two years. The court ordered him to report to probation officers and undergo psychiatric treatment for his mental impairment.

After the accident, Kanpitak was released on bail after his family placed a six milion baht land title deed as security.

His bail was continued on Tuesday. It was not known immediately whether his lawyer intends to pursue the case to the Supreme Court.

Related search: Vorayudh Yoovidhya, red bull heir, ferrari-motorcycle death, Pol Snr Sgt Maj Wichian Klanprasert

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