The Department of Special Investigation (DSI) on Wednesday clarified its crackdown operation on Dec 22 on the home of the consul-general of the Republic of Nauru in Sathon district -- which is suspected of sheltering Chinese people wanted by police -- after some seized items went missing.
A DSI source said the operation was jointly conducted by three police officers from the DSI and 10 others from the 191 Patrol and Special Operation Division, carrying a search warrant issued by the Southern Bangkok Criminal Court to search the site on Naradhiwas Road.
The DSI was responding to a remark by Atchariya Reuangrattanapong, chairman of the Help Crime Victims Club on Tuesday, highlighting alleged irregularities in the operation.
Mr Atchariya said police caught 12 Chinese suspects at the site, one of whom was wanted on Interpol's Red Notice list and who had escaped from a raid at Jinling Pub on Charoen Rat Road on Oct 26.
Some reports claimed the police team in the operation later released all suspects in exchange for 20 million baht.
Only a 36-year-old Chinese woman, identified as Xiang Yang, was presented at Thung Mahamek police for interrogation with seized items worth 2.5 million baht despite the fact that seized items captured in the picture looked to be worth more than 10 million baht.
Mr Atchariya has also petitioned national police chief Pol Gen Damrongsak Kittiprapas to handle the matter as such offences involved the embezzlement of seized property, bribery and malfeasance in office.
A probe has been launched with the order for an investigation made by the DSI's director-general on Dec 14.
An initial investigation showed the crackdown stemmed from a letter submitted by the deputy consul-general of the Republic of Nauru in Thailand to the DSI's director-general on Dec 9.
It asked for an inspection of a home outside the consulate's premises, suspected to be rented by its consul-general.
The deputy consul-general believed the residence may have been involved with illegal activities and was sheltering certain Chinese people, who had been seen entering and exiting the premises throughout the day.
Other ambassadors reside in the area, which could affect diplomatic relations.