Imprisoned tycoon 'doing fine'

Imprisoned tycoon 'doing fine'

Premchai Karnasuta, in white shirt, arrives at Thong Pha Phum Court in Thong Pha Phum district of Kanchanaburi province on the morning of Dec 8 to hear the Supreme Court's decision. The court sent him to prison for hunting in a wildlife sanctuary. (File photo: Piyarat hongcharoen)
Premchai Karnasuta, in white shirt, arrives at Thong Pha Phum Court in Thong Pha Phum district of Kanchanaburi province on the morning of Dec 8 to hear the Supreme Court's decision. The court sent him to prison for hunting in a wildlife sanctuary. (File photo: Piyarat hongcharoen)

Jailed tycoon Premchai Karnasuta is fine, sleeps well behind bars and has finished his first 21-day quarantine for Covid-19 control, according to the Corrections Department.

Tawatchai Chaiwat, deputy director-general of the department, said on Thursday that a  medical examination had found the convicted wildlife poacher was doing time well at Thong Pha Phum prison in Kanchanaburi.

He had completed an initial 21-day stay in the quarantine zone, and would do another 21-days in quarantine inside the prison's detention zone.

After that, he would be assigned to his cell in the prison zone. The process was standard for all new inmates, Mr Tawatchai said.

The deputy director-general acknowledged a request by Premchai's wife Kanita that Premchai be transferred to a hospital outside the prison, and said that decision was up to the prison doctor.

On Wednesday Ms Kanita met Justice Minister Somsak Thepsutin and sought permission for Premchai to be treated outside the prison. She said her husband had chronic illnesses including diabetes, hypertension and heart disease, and recently had an eye operation.

Mr Tawatchai said if the prison's doctor was of the opinion the medical equipment and supplies at the prison were inadequate to treat Premchai, officials could start considering the possibility of his receiving treatment on the outside.

"All inmates are treated in accordance with human rights principles, which include equal access to health services. There are no privileges for any particular group of people," he said.

Premchai, 66, the former president of Italian-Thai Development Plc, was sentenced on Dec 8 by the Supreme Court to three years and two months in jail for hunting animals including a rare black leopard in the World Heritage Thungyai Naresuan Wildlife Sanctuary in Thong Pha Phum district of Kanchanaburi about four years ago.

Kanita Karnasuta, wife of construction tycoon Premchai Karnasuta, meets Justice Minister Somsak Thepsutin, centre, at the Justice Ministry on Wednesday and requested  her husband's transfer to a medical facility outside his prison. (Justice Ministry photo)

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