Prosecutors pass buck in 'Boss' case

Prosecutors pass buck in 'Boss' case

Prayuth Petchkhun, deputy spokesman of the Office of the Attorney-General, updates the media on Wednesday on the progress in handling the Red Bull scion case. (Bangkok Post photo)
Prayuth Petchkhun, deputy spokesman of the Office of the Attorney-General, updates the media on Wednesday on the progress in handling the Red Bull scion case. (Bangkok Post photo)

Public prosecutors now insist they cannot proceed with the indictment of Red Bull scion Vorayuth "Boss" Yoovidhya on drug charges for allegedly having cocaine in his system during the 2012 hit-and-run case, saying they are duty-bound to wait until police actually arrest him and bring him to trial.

Prayuth Petchkhun, deputy spokesman of the Office of the Attorney-General (OAG), updated the media on Wednesday on the OAG's progress in handling the high-profile case.

The pursuit of justice in the case, which claimed the life of police officer Wichian Klanprasert, resumed in September after the OAG decided to indict Mr Vorayuth on two charges -- reckless driving causing death, and cocaine use -- citing fresh evidence and new witnesses.

Previously, the OAG -- specifically, deputy attorney-general Nate Naksuk and Ittiporn Kaewthip, deputy director-general of the Department of Criminal Litigation -- had decided to drop the reckless driving charge against Mr Vorayuth, a move which sparked public outrage.

A panel headed by former member of the National Anti-Corruption Commission, Vicha Mahakun, later urged Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha to revive the case, as it found evidence of intervention by officials, law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, lawyers and witnesses. It is the responsibility of police to track down Mr Vorayuth before public prosecutors can forward his case for trial, said Mr Prayuth.

Meanwhile, Watcharapol Prasarnrajkit, chairman of the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC), said the NACC is still examining the Vicha-led panel's report. A source, however, said the NACC has started working with the Anti-Money Laundering Office to determine if there had been payments made to people linked to the mishandling of the Red Bull scion case.



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