Criminal charges laid against 10 suspects in triad case

Criminal charges laid against 10 suspects in triad case

Kosolwat Inthujanyong, deputy spokesman of the Office of the Attorney-General, briefs reporters on the OAG's charges against 10 suspects in cases related to alleged crimes by Chinese businessman Chaiyanat
Kosolwat Inthujanyong, deputy spokesman of the Office of the Attorney-General, briefs reporters on the OAG's charges against 10 suspects in cases related to alleged crimes by Chinese businessman Chaiyanat "Tuhao" Kornchayanant, at the OAG on Monday. (Photo supplied)

Public prosecutors have laid several charges against 10 suspects in cases linke to Chinese businessman and alleged triad leader Chaiyanat "Tuhao" Kornchayanant, according to the Office of the Attorney-General.

OAG deputy spokesman Kosolwat Inthujanyong told reporters on Monday that the suspects face serious criminal charges relating to drug trafficking, money-laundering and participation in transnational crime.

Those charged were Tuhao's wife Watanaree Kornchayanant, Sitthipaibul Khamnil, Patcharin Itthiwatana, Sitthipong Thuesatthiang, Chutiphon Janchaithanatip, Surasawadee Thongpermploy, Peerapat Thongpermploy, Sitthikorn Prapacharaswong, Chatchai Lap-amnuaycharoen and Nathawut Sri-on.

Mr Kosolwat said the OAG took part in the investigation into alleged crimes related to the Tuhao case and set up a joint investigation centre with police.

They were working every day to conclude the investigation within the detention periods allowed for the suspects, he said.

Tuhao, 40, turned himself in to Bangkok police on Nov 23 to answer allegations of involvement in the illicit drug trade.

He was wanted on an arrest warrant issued by the Bangkok South Criminal Court for collusion in the drug trade and for illegal possession of a psychotropic substance with the intent to sell. He denied the charges  but was denied bail.

His surrender followed searches at two locations in Bangkok -- a luxury house on Rama V Road and a luxury hotel in downtown Bangkok -- believed to be his hideouts.

On Oct 26, police stormed Jinling, which operated illegally as a nightclub in three adjacent buildings on Charoen Rat Road in Yannawa district, and 104 customers, 99 of them Chinese nationals, tested positive for drug use.

Tuhao was reported to be the owner of the businesses in the complex. He was also alleged to be a leader of a Chinese triad operating in Thailand, and was suspected of involvement in arranging the entry of Chinese people into Thailand for illegal purposes.

Tuhao received Thai nationality in 2014. His Thai wife is a colonel in the police foreign affairs sub-division and a niece of former national chief of the Royal Thai Police Pol Gen Pracha Promnok, who was a deputy prime minister in the Yingluck Shinawatra government.

Authorities impounded assets worth billions of baht and suspected to have been purchased with the proceeds of illegal activities. The Department of Special Investigation is conducting its own investigation into his business.


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