Police hunt for 'Jo Ferrari'

Police hunt for 'Jo Ferrari'

A still image from a video clip shows police officers wrapping a plastic bag over a drug suspect's head.
A still image from a video clip shows police officers wrapping a plastic bag over a drug suspect's head.

Police have launched a manhunt for a police station chief who allegedly killed a drug suspect.

Pol Col Thitisan Utthanaphon, formerly the superintendent of a police station in Nakhon Sawan and known to his colleagues as "Jo Ferrari", disappeared three days ago before a video clip of him committing torture and trying to extort money from the suspect was released on social media on Tuesday.

The clip made headlines and prompted Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Tuesday to order the police to investigate the incident that reportedly led to the man's death by suffocation.

The dead suspect was on Wednesday identified as 24-year-old Chiraphong Thanaphiphat.

The seven police allegedly involved in Chiraphong's death have been dismissed from their positions and arrest warrants have been issued.

The suspects, five of whom have already been detained, now face charges including torture and murder.

On Tuesday a lawyer posted the clip on his Facebook page in which a police officer is seen putting a plastic bag over the head of a man (Chiraphong), who was wearing a yellow T-shirt.

The lawyer said he obtained the clip from a junior police officer who asked for his help in forwarding the clip to the national police chief.

On Wednesday, police began searching locations where Pol Col Thitisan might have been, including his luxury house in Kannayao district of Bangkok.

Found at the 60-million-baht house were 29 luxury cars worth more than 100 million baht in total, said a source.

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Vocabulary

  • arrest warrant: a document signed by a judge allowing police to arrest someone - หมายจับ
  • clip: a short piece or segment of video or audio; a video clip or audio clip -
  • colleagues (noun): people who work in the same organisation, department or field as you do - เพื่อนร่วมงาน
  • detained: kept in a place and not allowed to leave - กักตัว ควบคุมตัวหรือฝากขัง
  • extort: to try to illegally obtain something by force or threat - รีดไถ
  • luxury: the best and most expensive of something - ที่หรูหรา 
  • manhunt: an organised search for a person, especially a criminal - การล่าหัว  การตามล่าจับกุม
  • source: someone who gives information - แหล่งข่าว
  • suffocation: dying from a lack of air to breathe - การขาดอากาศหายใจ
  • suspect: a person who is thought to have committed a crime - ผู้ต้องสงสัย
  • torture: causing great physical or mental pain to someone intentionally - ทรมานให้เจ็บปวด
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