Court detains three lese majeste suspects

Court detains three lese majeste suspects

Suriyan Sujaritpolwong, alias Mor Yong, is taken to the Bangkok Military Court by police who sought to detain him and two others accused of lese majeste. (Photo by Apichart Jinakul)
Suriyan Sujaritpolwong, alias Mor Yong, is taken to the Bangkok Military Court by police who sought to detain him and two others accused of lese majeste. (Photo by Apichart Jinakul)

The Bangkok Military Court has approved a police request to detain three people accused of lese majeste - two civilians and one police officer - for 12 days between until Nov 1 for further questioning.

The three - Suriyan Sujaritpolwong, 53, alias Mor Yong, a well-known fortune teller, Jirawong Wattanathewasilp, 39, Mr Suriyan's aide, and Pol Maj Prakrom Warunprapha, 44, an officer of the Technology Crime Suppression Division's Sub-Division 1 - were brought to the Bangkok Military Court at about 3.30pm.

According to a National Council for Peace and Order release, acting on NCPO Order 3/2015 the military took the three into its custody on receiving reports that a group of persons had, on various occasions, cited the high institution to other people for ill-gotten gains in violation of Section 112 of the Criminal Code, or the lese majeste law.  

The three were also reported to have committed other legal offences which could cause damage to the royal institution.

From a preliminary investigation, there were grounds to believed they had committed the offences as reported.

Maj Gen Wicharn Jottaeng, chief of the NCPO's legal affairs section, subsequently filed a police complaint against the three for lese majeste.

Pol Gen Chakthip Chaichinda, the national police chief, on Oct 16 signed an order to appoint a 19-member police committee to investigate the complaint. Pol Lt Gen Srivara Rangsibrahmanakul, chief of the Metropolitan Police, is the committee chair, and Pol Lt Gen Thitiraj Nhonghanpitak, chief of the Central Investigation Bureau, is his deputy.

As requested by the police, the Bangkok Military Court approved warrants for their arrest on Oct 18.

From subsequent enquiries, the committee decided to charge Mr Suriyan and Mr Jirawong with lese majeste, and Pol Maj Prakrom with illegal possession of unauthorised weapons and telecommunications radio, falsifying documents and using falsified documents, and lese majeste.

Mr Suriyan had allegedly confessed to the charges, but Mr Jirawong and Pol Maj Prakrom denied them.

The three were brought to the Bangkok Military Court on Wednesday to seek approval for the police to further detain them for a period of 12 days between Oct 21 and Nov 1.

The court approved the request.  

The three suspects were then taken by Corrections Department officials to a temporary prison inside the 11th Army Circle on Nakhon Chaisi road.

Pol Lt Gen Srivara said there might be others involved in the case. If there are, police would proceed with a case against them, he added.

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