A lawyer for Chaiwat “Benz Daemon” Kachornboonthaworn, a prime suspect linked to the macau888 online gambling network, handed over a rare Lamborghini supercar to police yesterday to examine as potential evidence in their investigation.
Cyber Crime Investigation Bureau (CCIB) investigators received the Lamborghini Mad Bull Liberty Walk Aventador V2 for examination. The supercar, with an estimated value of 40 million baht, was reported to be the only one in Thailand and the seventh of 50 made worldwide.
Lawyer Phisit Chutpornpongchai said Mr Chaiwat had coordinated with him to hand over the car to police, as they suspected it might be linked to the online gambling network. The vehicle was taken from a warehouse in the Ratchaphruek area.
Checks found the supercar was registered under the name of Kittiphong “Big” Kachornboonthaworn, 32, a younger brother of Mr Chaiwat, 37. The registration was made on the day the car was purchased, and there had been no change of ownership since, said the lawyer. He was unable to say whether the vehicle was linked to the gambling network.
Police had been searching for the Lamborghini as they believed it was owned by Mr Chaiwat, who is suspected of running the online gambling empire. Two other luxury cars owned by him were impounded on Feb 6.
The crackdown on macau888 came after 32-year-old actress Arisara “Due” Thongborisut shed light on its activities and those involved in it, in a Facebook post on Jan 15.
In the post, she provided clues that the gambling network was run by “four brothers’’, all with the initial “Bor”. Mr Chaiwat is Ms Arisara’s ex-boyfriend and one of the brothers she alluded to.
The four siblings left Thailand for Hong Kong on Jan 16, according to police.
Mr Chaiwat’s lawyer said he had talked with his client on Thursday night about his surrender. His client confirmed that he would report to police on Feb 16 as planned earlier and had no intention of fleeing to another country.
“My client has not fled, as the arrest warrant was issued after he flew abroad,” said the lawyer. “After learning about the warrant, Mr Chaiwat is now rushing to finish his business abroad and will return to surrender.”
On physical abuse allegations made by Ms Arisara, the lawyer said they were exaggerated, and Mr Chaiwat did not want to counter them because he wanted to focus on his case.
On Wednesday, Ms Arisara posted a video clip on her Facebook page accusing her ex-boyfriend of physical assault, which she said had inflicted emotional distress on her. She cited this as her reason for choosing to expose the alleged gambling operation.
CCIB commissioner Pol Lt Gen Worawat Watnakhonbancha said yesterday that Mr Kittiphong had authorised the lawyer to hand over the supercar to police for examination.
The investigation team will investigate Mr Chaiwat’s money trail and his alleged link to the supercar to find out whether any ill-gotten gains had been used to purchase it, said Pol Lt Gen Worawat. Mr Chaiwat must explain why the car was registered in his brother’s name, he added.