Four senior officers attached to the Muang district police station in Samut Prakan province have been transferred to inactive posts following a shooting at a gambling den in their area.
Pol Col Termrat Jindawat, the station chief, was among those moved to the provincial police operations centre after he claimed he had not been informed about the incident in question.
The others are Pol Lt Col Nakkhaphan Photha, deputy chief for crime suppression; Pol Lt Col Yodrak Kittilapnarat, crime suppression chief; and Pol Lt Col Vorasuwat Thaweeratchataphokhin, investigation chief. The transfer order was signed on Friday by Pol Maj Gen Wallop Araemlar, the provincial police chief.
A fact-finding investigation has also been launched into the shooting at the gambling den.
On Thursday, the popular community Facebook page Sai Mai Tong Rod (Sai Mai District Must Survive) posted a report that a group of eight armed men had robbed a gambling den on Srinakarin Road in Muang district on Wednesday night, leading to a shootout that left one person dead and one injured. They reportedly got away with 400,000 baht.
Asked later that day by reporters about the posting, Pol Col Termrat said he had been not informed of any such robbery and shooting in his area.
Pol Gen Surachate Hakparn, the deputy national police chief who has been rooting out corruption in uniform, grew curious. He spoke with the administrator of the Facebook page and sent his own people to investigate. They found there had been a shooting at an illegal gambling den in Muang district, although no one had died.
Pol Col Termrat later phoned the deputy national chief and admitted the shooting had taken place, Thai media reported.
Pol Lt Col Amnat Ratchasee, the deputy station chief responsible for investigations, was not affected by the transfer order as he was on leave at the time, Pol Maj Gen Wallop said on Saturday.
All of the suspects involved in the robbery have now been identified, national police chief Pol Gen Damrongsak Kittiprapas said on Saturday.
A man identified only as Aow, who owns a restaurant called Khrua Ban Lung where the robbery reportedly took place, insisted he only had heard a gunshot from a table and when he came out to check he found no one was injured or killed.
He claimed there were no illegal gambling activities inside his restaurant.