'Big Joke' files court complaint over search warrants
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'Big Joke' files court complaint over search warrants

Police application in contempt, concealed information from court, he says

Pol Gen Surachate Hakparn speaks to reporters outside the Criminal Court on Tuesday. (Photo supplied)
Pol Gen Surachate Hakparn speaks to reporters outside the Criminal Court on Tuesday. (Photo supplied)

Deputy national police chief Surachate "Big Joke" Hakparn filed a complaint with the Criminal Court on Tuesday alleging contempt of court in the police application for a warrant that allowed them to search several houses he uses on Monday.

Pol Gen Surachate told reporters later that the application for search warrants concealed facts from the court.

He said it failed to inform the court that he occupied the five houses, and a large force was used in the searches in a way that tarnished his reputation.

Cyber crime police raided the houses on Vibhavadi 60 Road, in Bangkok, on Monday morning. It was part of a larger operation against an online gambling network.

The deputy police chief said the police officers who conducted the searches targeted a police inspector who is his close aide, so they would have known that he lived there.

"If the court had known that they are my houses it would have acted fairly, because I do not face prosecution," Pol Gen Surachate said.

He said his close subordinates who were arrested during the police operation, for alleged involvement in online gambling, would also file complaints.

If the court had known that the arrest warrants targeted police officers, it would have issued summonses, not arrest warrants, because police officers were government officials whose whereabouts were clear and would not attempt to escape, the deputy national police chief said.

"This case shows concealment, and is deserving of suspicion... If a deputy national police chief does not receive fair treatment, how can the people get it?" Pol Gen Surachate said.

The requests to the court for arrest warrants for his subordinates identified the targets only by name, and omitted their police ranks, he said.

Pol Gen Surachate said he had nothing to do with any online gambling business. Some of his subordinates had a connection with a suspected online gambling host, but that was a persoal matter which should not be linked to him, Pol Gen Surachate said.

According to the deputy national police chief, his five houses were searched on Monday. He said they actually belong to a close relative, a big businessman in Udon Thani province.

He rented the houses for his convenience when staying in Bangkok, because he is a native of the southern province of Songkhla. He stayed in two of the houses, and used the three other properties for storage.

Immediately after the searches he had raised the matter with national police chief Pol Gen Damrongsak Kittiprapas.

He said the national police chief told him he had known it was possible the houses would be searched and had ordered the officers concerned to inform him in advance. However, the national police chief said he was informed of the searches only after they had been conducted, Pol Gen Surachate said.

"This means that the national police chief did not give the (search) order... I confirm that I will take legal action against everyone involved in the incident... I am sure that someone ordered it... It is about politics within the Royal Thai Police Office," Pol Gen Surachate said.

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