Apiwan said to have fled abroad

Former Pheu Thai list MP Apiwan Wiriyachai, a former deputy house speaker wanted on an arrest warrant, is believed to have fled abroad, deputy police chief Somyos Phumphanmuang said on Thursday.

Pol Gen Somyos, who is in charge of security affairs, was speaking at a meeting of high-level police officers to hear reports on the progress of investigations on lese majeste and security-related cases being handled by the Metropolitan Police Bureau.

He said it was reported that Col Apiwan, who is wanted under an arrest warrant for violating Section 112 of the Criminal Code, the lese majeste law, had fled abroad but it was not known what country he went to.

He said Pol Lt Gen Jakthip had been assigned to head a police team to pursue Col Apiwan. If they learn what country he has fled to they will ask the Foreign Affairs Department to seek his extradition.

Col Apiwan was also found to have been involved in the rally of the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) in front of the residence of Privy Council chairman Prem Tinsulanonda on July 22, 2007 along with former Prime Minister's Office minister Jakrapob Penkair, who is also wanted for alleged lese majeste, Pol Gen Somyos said.

Those present at the meeting included Pol Lt Gen Jakthip Chaichinda, an assistant police chief acting for the Metropolitan Police chief, and Pol Maj Gen Amnuay Nimmano, deputy chief of the Police Education Bureau on temporary duty at the Metropolitan Police headquarters.

Related search: coup, Apiwan Wiriyachai

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