Ex-minister Banyin faces murder rap

Ex-minister Banyin faces murder rap

Killing linked to share transfer case

A son of former deputy commerce minister Pol Lt Col Banyin Tangpakorn waits for permission to visit his father at the Crime Suppression Division HQ in Bangkok on Monday.  (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)
A son of former deputy commerce minister Pol Lt Col Banyin Tangpakorn waits for permission to visit his father at the Crime Suppression Division HQ in Bangkok on Monday.  (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

Former deputy commerce minister Banyin Tangpakorn and five other suspects are facing six charges including premeditated murder.

The charges stem from the abduction and murder of a brother of a senior judge to force her to drop an indictment against Pol Lt Col Banyin in a share transfer case.

Wirachai Sakuntaprasoet, an elder brother of Bangkok South Criminal Court judge Phanida Sakuntaprasoet, was kidnapped by four men outside the court on Feb 4. The 70-year-old was later killed and his body burned and dumped into the Chao Phraya River in Nakhon Sawan.

One of the alleged kidnappers was Pol Lt Col Banyin, who drove Wirachai from Bangkok to a wood in Khao Bai Mai in Nakhon Sawan, police revealed on Monday.

Pol Lt Col Banyin and two aides alleged accomplices, Manat Thapnin and Narongsak Pomchan, were arrested on Sunday.

Questioning of Mr Manat led to the arrest of three more suspects, identified as Pol Senior Sgt Maj Thongchai Wachisatcha, Prachawit Sithongsuk and Chatchai Menkun.

All were initially charged with threatening a state official, illegal assembly, demanding a ransom and abduction.

Police added premeditated murder and conspiracy to detain a person, resulting in his or her death to the charges following the discovery of bloodstains in one of four seized cars and bone fragments believed to belong to Wirachai, a police source told the Bangkok Post.

Investigators found the fragments, damaged car tyres and shirt buttons where the victim was supposedly burned.

What was left of his body was stuffed in fertilizer bags which were then dumped in the river, according to investigators.

Divers were trying to retrieve the bags near Takhian Luean Bridge in Nakhon Sawan's Muang district.

The crime was well planned as the suspects registered new mobile phone numbers and attached fake registration plates to their cars, said one police officer.

Pol Lt Col Banyin, who is still in custody, denied the charges.

The alleged crime took place as a March 20 ruling on his share transfer case draws near. He was accused of forging documents to set up the transfer of 300 million baht's worth of shares owned by his friend and businessman Chuwong Sae Tang, who was killed in a road accident in a car driven by Pol Lt Col Banyin in 2015.


Do you like the content of this article?
COMMENT (15)

Northeast scare

Community testing for Covid-19 continuing at locked down villages in Nakhon Phanom province, after a food vendor is found to have been infected by visitors from Bangkok over the New Year.

13:36

ฺNigerian arrested for selling drugs in Patong

PHUKET: A Nigerian man was arrested and amounts of crystal methamphetamine, cocaine and ecstasy seized, as he was allegedly making a delivery to customers in Patong area.

13:02

+142 Covid

The latest count of Covid-19 cases, 125 new local infections and 17 imported, raises the total to 12,795 - with nightlife still shut down in Bangkok.

12:47