Search for Pongpat's assets continue
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Search for Pongpat's assets continue

Authorities on Monday seized millions of baht in wood and other assets from a house and antique shop in Nonthaburi province allegedly connected to former Central Investigation Bureau chief Pongpat Chayapan.

Police spokesman Prawut Thawornsiri inspects an empty safe at a house of former central investigation chief Pongpat Chayapan in Nonthaburi on Monday. (Photo by Krit Promsaka na Sakolnakorn).

Police and soldiers searched a two-storey single-family home in the Muang Thong Thani housing estate opposite Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University in Pak Kret district.

The house was under construction. Authorities found three 1.4-cu-metre safes, two of which were opened and found empty. The third will be opened Tuesday.

Authorities reportedly searched the property for the first time after learning about a purported connection to Pol Lt Gen Pongpat, who allegedly received bribes from police seeking promotions, gambling dens and oil smugglers nationwide.

Pol Lt Gen Prawut Thawornsiri, spokesman for the Royal Thai Police Office, said that in addition to the new safes, officials also found 150 wood planks believed to wait for installation in the home. Value of the wood was estimated at more than 3 million baht.

He added that another suspect, Witthaya Thepkhunthod, was arrested, while the surrender of two soldiers also allegedly involved in the alleged corruption network was being worked out with their unit.

Police, forestry officials and soldiers also searched Sawong Antique Co on Chaeng Watthana Road in Pak Kret district.

Pol Maj Gen Prasopchoke Prommoon, commander of the Natural Resources and Environmental Crime Division, said authorities seized over 2,700 wooden planks, wood-processing tools, door frames, wooden furniture, deity statues, carved sandstone statues and artefacts to check whether they had been legally acquired.

The commander said the antique shop was believed to be connected with Mrs Sawong Mungthiang, a suspect connected to Pol Lt Gen Pongpat.

Authorities find wood planks worth about 3 million baht at the house. (Photo by Apichit Jinakul)

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