Ex-banker charged with faking car-lease contracts
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Ex-banker charged with faking car-lease contracts

Police say suspect colluded with friend who ran a used-car tent to earn commissions

Theephat Liangwatthanatham, 43, a former bank employee wanted for falsifying loan and auto leasing contracts, uses his mobile phone after being arrested in front of a convenience store in Muang district of Phitsanulok on Tuesday. (Photo supplied/Wassayos Ngamkham)
Theephat Liangwatthanatham, 43, a former bank employee wanted for falsifying loan and auto leasing contracts, uses his mobile phone after being arrested in front of a convenience store in Muang district of Phitsanulok on Tuesday. (Photo supplied/Wassayos Ngamkham)

Police have arrested a former senior bank employee accused of falsifying loan and auto leasing contracts to get commission fees in Muang district of Phitsanulok province.

Theephat Liangwatthanatham, 43, was apprehended in front of a convenience store in tambon Tha Pho on Tuesday, said Pol Col Sanuwong Khongkha-in, superintendent of sub-division 4 of the Anti-Corruption Police Division (ACPD).

Mr Theephat was wanted on an arrest warrant issued by the Central Criminal Court for Corruption and Misconduct Cases on Nov 28 last year for malfeasance causing damage to an organisation or a state agency.

According to police, the suspect used to be a senior employee in the leasing department of a well-known bank, which was not named. They say he colluded with a friend who ran a used-car tent in falsifying auto leasing documents and contracts.

Police say the banker altered auto leasing contracts of other car tent businesses for use with those of his friend’s firm to earn commissions. As well, he embezzled portions of the loans granted to customers for his own use, investigators said.

During questioning, Mr Theephat reportedly admitted that in 10 years working as a loan officer at a commercial bank, he had observed that there were legal loopholes he could exploit.

When he changed jobs and went to work for a state enterprise bank, he had football gambling debts and his family was also in dire need of money. He started to falsify documents to embezzle money from the bank to pay off the gambling debts. He was later fired from the bank and jailed for three years.

He also used credit cards borrowed from friends and never repaid them. He eventually changed his name and fled.

The offences noted in the arrest warrant took place in 2013, said the suspect. He estimated that the losses to the bank exceeded one million baht, police said.

The arresting team handed him over to the Central Criminal Court for Corruption and Misconduct Cases.

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