Abbot, four others face indictment
The Department of Special Investigation (DSI) has wrapped up its probe into the 1.4-billion-baht money laundering case associated with the Klongchan Credit Union Cooperative (KCUC) and will seek to indict five suspects including embattled abbot Phra Dhammajayo of Wat Phra Dhammakaya.
DSI chief Paisit Wongmuang confirmed Monday he has approved a request to seek the indictment of former cooperative chairman Supachai Srisupa-aksorn; Saranya Manmhad, a former financial officer at the KCUC; Thongphin Kanlom, a former deputy chairman of the KCUC; Phra Dhammajayo; and Sasithon Chokprasit who has reportedly fled overseas.
Supachai, who admitted to siphoning money from KCUC accounts in 2013, is currently in prison after being sentenced by the Criminal Court to 16 years in jail.
The DSI now wants the five suspects to be indicted on charges of conspiring to launder money, laundering money and receiving stolen property in connection with 27 cheques totalling 1.4 billion baht paid from the KCUC.
LT JG Somnuek Siangkong, spokesman of the Office of the Attorney-General (OAG), noted some suspects may not be indicted if they did not answer charges.
Supachai, Ms Saranya and Ms Thongphin were required to appear at the OAG to hear the OAG's decision on the indictment request on July 13, he said.
As for Phra Dhammajayo and Ms Sasithon, it was the responsibility of investigators to bring them to hear the OAG's decision, he added.
Pol Lt Col Sombun Sarasit, the DSI deputy director-general who has been heading a DSI team negotiating with Phra Dhammajayo, said the team continued to work with the Pathum Thani provincial Sangha administration chief to encourage the abbot to turn himself in.