Praween Chankhlai, also known as "Kamnan Nok", has been indicted in connection with the murder of a highway police officer at a party at his house in Nakhon Pathom province on Sept 6.
During the party, Pol Maj Sivakorn Saibua, a Highway Police Sub-Division 2 officer, was shot dead by Thananchai Manmak at Mr Praween's house in Muang district. This followed an argument Mr Praween and Pol Maj Sivakorn over a promotion of Mr Praween's policeman nephew. The shooting took place in the presence of a large number of police and civilians.
Mr Praween surrendered to police the following day, while Thananchai, who fled the scene, was killed in a gunfight with police in Kanchanaburi province.
Crime Suppression Division (CSD) investigators forwarded an investigation report to the prosecutors.
Prayuth Phetkhun, the Office of Attorney General (OAG) spokesman, said at a press conference on Thursday the prosecutors decided to indict those involved in two cases.
The first case is on the murder of Sivakorn, involving Thananchai, the gunman, and Mr Praween, who was accused of ordering Thananchai to commit the crime. However, since Thananchai had been killed in a gunfight with police, Mr Praween is now the sole defendant.
In the second case, the investigators charged 28 police officers and civilians, including Mr Praween, who were at the scene of the murder for failure to act with the prudence that a reasonable person would exercise under the same circumstances. However, the prosecutors decided to indict 23 of them and spared five others, all of them police officers.
The five officers who were spared from indictment are Pol Col Krisdaporn Chong-aksorn, a former superindent of Phayathai police; Pol Capt Nathapol Nakkorn, Pol Lt Col Patara Vorayawisut, Pol Col Panuthat Luangsajjakul and Pol Lt Manat Chanmeesap. The prosecutors found they had not stayed idle in that situation but acted helpfully, including taking the police officer who was shot to the hospital.
The prosecutors on Thursday filed the two cases with two courts. The murder case was filed with the Criminal Court and the other case with the Central Criminal Court for Corruption and Misconduct Cases, Mr Prayuth said.