The chief of the Department of Thai Traditional and Alternative Medicine has denied any unfair treatment in the search of a cannabis shop at a hotel owned by crime whistleblower Chuvit Kamolvisit.
Director-general Thongchai Lertwilairatanapong said on Tuesday that the search of the shop at the Davis Hotel on Monday was part of the monthly cannabis shop inspections routinely made by the department. It was not unfairly aimed at Mr Chuvit.
The search was within the department's jurisdiction and had not been announced in advance to ensure no offences were covered up, Dr Thongchai said.
He denied the search had anything to do with Mr Chuvit's criticism of the cannabis use policy of Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul, leader of the Bhumjaithai Party.
There had been complaints alleging the illegal advertising of cannabis bud sales there. Officials made the search without involving police because they had the authority to do so, he said.
The search found no legal violations by the cannabis shop, which had a licence to sell cannabis products, and no evidence of illegal advertising, the director-general said.
The search on Monday annoyed Mr Chuvit, who said that it was conducted shortly after he criticised the cannabis policy proposed by the Bhumjaithai Party.
On Tuesday Mr Chuvit went to Government House in company with some young people, to criticise the decriminalisation of cannabis without strict measures to prevent abuse and easy access by young people.
Mr Chuvit said he would visit other provinces to publicly explain the cannabis policy, so that voters could make informed decisions at the coming general election.
Mr Anutin said at Government House on Tuesday that Mr Chuvit's criticism was politically motivated.
Mr Chuvit earlier attacked Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob and the Bhumjaithai Party, alleging irregularities in the Orange Line electric train project.