Srivara heads South on death-threats probe

Srivara heads South on death-threats probe

Pol Maj Gen Paween Pongsirin (Bangkok Post file photo)
Pol Maj Gen Paween Pongsirin (Bangkok Post file photo)

Deputy national police chief Srivara Ransibrahmanakul will travel to Songkhla on Wednesday and then Yala as part of his inquiry into the death-threats claim by the former chief investigator in the Rohingya human trafficking case.

Pol Gen Srivara said he would examine the evidence compiled for the case during his three-day trip. Whether anyone would be summoned for questioning would depend on the evidence.

He would also assess the human trafficking situation in the three southernmost border provinces. 

Pol Gen Srivara said he had tried unsuccessfully to contact Pol Maj-Gen Paween Pongsirin, who fled to Australia and is reportedly seeking political asylum, to ask for details about the death threats. 

“As his classmate at the Royal Police Cadet Academy, I want to ask Gen Paween to return to Thailand and use the legal process to fight [the alleged threats],” Pol Gen Srivara said. 

“If he contacts me I am ready to help.”

Pol Maj-Gen Paween flew to Melbourne early this month where he told local media outlets he was fleeing  death threats made by influential figures in the military and police involved in the trafficking of Rohingya Muslim migrants in the South. 

Pol Gen Srivara, who is overseeing the investigation, said a police committee had questioned more than 50 officers on Pol Maj Gen Paween’s team and found that none of them had received death threats

He pledged to prosecute any influential figure or government officer found to have threatened Pol Maj-Gen Paween or witnesses in the human trafficking cases. 

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