NACC targeting 4 for unusual wealth

NACC targeting 4 for unusual wealth

The National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) says there are grounds to believe four Revenue Department officials in Samut Prakan province acted dishonestly by accruing wealth worth two billion baht which they could not account for.

The findings in this case would be forwarded to the Office of the Attorney-General (OAG) which will decide whether to indict the four officials in the Central Criminal Court for Corruption and Misconduct Cases, said Sornchai Chuwichian, assistant to the NACC secretary-general, in his capacity as deputy NACC spokesman. The NACC is asking the court via the OAG to seize the assets possessed by the officials which had been acquired illegally.

It also recommends the Revenue Department fire them for allegedly violating the 2018 organic law on corruption suppression and prevention, said Mr Sornchai.

According to the NACC, one official, Danai Damrongchaiyothin, had money totalling 1.18 billion baht in seven bank accounts. He has failed to adequately explain how he came to have amassed such wealth working as a state official.

The other three suspects -- Chonlathon Khongman, Duangkamon Pleumsawat and Uthomphon Khemwichian -- were found to have 559.94 million baht, 334.24 million baht and 1.88 million baht in their accounts, respectively. They could not explain convincingly how they had obtained the money, said Mr Sornchai.

Meanwhile, Ormsin Chivapruck, a former deputy transport minister, has been cleared in an NACC probe into a bidding price collusion case, in which he and five other parties were accused of being involved in connection with a 2016 coastal erosion prevention project.

Mr Ormsin, while serving as deputy transport minister in the previous Prayut Chan-o-cha administration, approved the bidding result of the project at Samila Beach in Songkhla province. He was accused of deliberately excluding a firm from e-bidding held on Jan 25, 2016 for the project worth 269 million baht.

However, the commission ruled that no facts or evidence existed which could be used to back the allegation and decided to throw out the case against Mr Omsin.

Also under investigation were five Marine Department officials who had allegedly rushed the signing of the project's construction contract without waiting for the losing bidder to appeal, according to Mr Sornchai.

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