Officer wanted in Mae Hong Son scandal surrenders
published : 6 May 2017 at 16:00
writer: Online Reporters
MAE HONG SON - A senior police officer accused of having sex with a teen prostitute turned himself in to police investigating the growing trafficking scandal on Saturday.
Pol Lt Col Monkol Pantee, deputy superintendent of the Mae Hong Son police, faces charges of sexually abusing a girl aged below 15 and depriving her of parental care for sexual molestation, said Pol Col Sattasak Pimolthip, chief of the Muang district station.
Investigators took the accused officer to the provincial court to seek his detention and opposed bail, Thai media reported.
Pol Lt Col Mongol was implicated by a teenage prostitute who said she had been taken by a trafficking gang to service him at his official police residence in Mae Hong Son.
On Friday, deputy national police chief Srivara Ransibrahmanakul went to the northern province to inspect a police room where Pol Lt Col Mongkol, who was at large at the time, allegedly had sex with the girl.
Pol Gen Srivara also met six people suspected of having bought sex from teenage prostitutes. Five were policemen whose ranks ranged from corporal to lieutenant colonel. The other was a teacher.
Investigators from the police Anti-Trafficking in Persons Division (ATPD) say the sex ring began in Mae Hong Son in 2014. A number of teenage girls were forced into the business and had images of owls tattooed on their chests. Investigators say pimps arranged for the girls to provide sexual services, with government officials said to be among the customers. In some cases, police say, girls were gang-raped.
Police so far have made nine arrests, including a police senior sergeant major and two local women said to have acted as procurers.