3 Akharapongpreecha brothers charged with lèse majesté

Three brothers and two more people connected to a network of high ranking police officers charged with lèse majesté are accused of defaming the monarchy, illegal possession of weapons, robbery, and holding others for ransom. A total of seven people involved in this case have now been charged with lèse majesté.      

The investigators on 28 November detained three siblings, Natthapol, Sitthisak, and Narong Akharapongpreecha, and Sutthisak Sutthijit and Chakan Phakphum, who are allegedly criminally associated with Pol Lt Gen Pongpat Chayapan.

The five suspects are charged with defaming the monarchy, carrying weapons in public, possessing unlicensed weapons, robbery, and unlawful detention. All of them pleaded guilty to all charges.

According the ASTV-Manager, Pol Maj Gen Sriwara Rangsiphrammanakul, commander of the Metropolitan Police stated at the press briefing that three of the five, Natthapol, Narong, and Chakan also have also been charged with extortion, unlawful detention, and robbery by Phrakhanong Police Station and Wat Phraya Krai Police Station.

On 22 November, a court approved arrest warrants for Pol Lt Gen Pongpat Chayapan, former Commander of the Central Investigation Bureau, and Pol Maj Gen Kowit Wongrungruang, former Deputy Commander of the Central Investigation Bureau, who are accused of defaming the King, asking for bribes, money laundering and misconduct.

On the same warrant, three other police officers and three civilians were named. Their charges relate to bribery, encroachment into protected areas, and illegal possession of wild animals.

Advertisements

Since 2007, Prachatai English has been covering underreported issues in Thailand, especially about democratization and human rights, despite the risk and pressure from the law and the authorities. However, with only 2 full-time reporters and increasing annual operating costs, keeping our work going is a challenge. Your support will ensure we stay a professional media source and be able to expand our team to meet the challenges and deliver timely and in-depth reporting.

• Simple steps to support Prachatai English

1. Bank transfer to account “โครงการหนังสือพิมพ์อินเทอร์เน็ต ประชาไท” or “Prachatai Online Newspaper” 091-0-21689-4, Krungthai Bank

2. Or, Transfer money via Paypal, to e-mail address: service@prachatai.com, please leave a comment on the transaction as “For Prachatai English”