Foreign lawbreakers caught in busts
Crimes cover fraud, drugs, and robbery
A former head of the Czech SWAT team, an Italian national, and three Korean men have been arrested in separate criminal cases that took place inside and outside the country, according to Immigration Bureau (IB) chief Pol Lt Gen Surachate Hakparn.
Petr Bilek, a 55-year-old Czech national, was wanted under an Interpol Red Notice as he had allegedly colluded to commit robbery in his native country, Pol Lt Gen Surachate said, adding he was found to have earlier served as the chief of a SWAT team in the Czech Republic.
Following the incident, he fled to Thailand, where he holed up in Pattaya, Pol Lt Gen Surachate said, adding Mr Bilek will be extradited.
The IB commander also announced the arrest of Daniele Lollo from Italy, also wanted under an Interpol Red Notice, on drug charges in his country.
According to Pol Lt Gen Surachate, cocaine, marijuana, as well as drug paraphernalia, were found in Mr Lollo's home in Treviso, following searches of the property between 2003 and 2007.
In 2010, he fled to Phuket, where he has resided since, the IB chief said, adding that Mr Lollo has a Thai wife.
An investigation is underway to determine whether he had been involved with drug gangs in Thailand, he said. Mr Lollo will be sent back to face prosecution in his country.
Meanwhile, a 28-year-old South Korean man, Geontl Hwang, was arrested for allegedly luring three Japanese nationals into investing in the domestic and foreign stock markets, resulting in a loss of 2.6 million baht.
After Mr Hwang received the money, he allegedly detained the trio in a condominium in Sukhumvit Soi 13 where he assaulted them for over two months.
The suspect threatened to contact the Yakuza to assault their families.
One of the victims, he said, managed to escape from the room and sought help from the Japanese embassy in Thailand, which later contacted the IB to help free the other two captives.
Police are confident they have enough evidence to press charges, he said. Mr Hwang is found to have travelled in and out of Thailand several times with tourist visas.
Police officers also arrested another South Korean man, Park Yunkwan, and his Thai wife for allegedly falsifying passports which they used for renting cars they later stole and sold, Pol Lt Gen Surachate said. Damage was estimated at more than 10 million baht.
Mr Yunkwan was facing more than 60 arrest warrants on fraud charges in his native country.
Meanwhile, a third South Korean suspect, Lee Kyulae, was arrested in Pattaya. He was facing assault charges in his country.