Cash in hand (video)
A van driver caught on camera handing money to a policeman at a no-parking zone near Lumpini Park has come out to explain the incident after the video went viral.
The clip, posted on Wednesday by Facebook user AA'Hiace Korat, shows the driver quickly handing banknotes to the policeman, who was standing between the passenger van and a bus.
The officer hastily put the money in his pocket and had a quick chat with the driver, before riding off on his motorcycle.
The incident prompted net users to ridicule the ever-fading image of the Royal Thai Police and to demand authorities investigate and take action against the policeman and the driver.
Pol Col Pornchai Chalordet, superintendent of Lumpini police station, later told reporters police will investigate whether the officer was taking a bribe, as it could be a misunderstanding. If guilty, he would be penalised, he said.
On Thursday, 52-year-old Sayan Puakpeng reported to police, saying he was the person in the video who handed 600 baht to Pol Sub Lt Sarawut Ruabruamwong, a traffic policeman in Lumpini.
"Pol Sub Lt Sarawut and I are close friends. I owed him 1,000 baht after he paid for my drinks last Friday. On Wednesday, I drove to Lumpini and called him to come and get 600 baht from me first.
"It's not bribery. If it's bribery, it wouldn't take place in the open, surely," the van driver said.
However, many netizens doubted Mr Sayan's claim, saying he acted suspiciously before giving the money to the policeman.
Video credit: Facebook user AA'Hiace Korat