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Six Bangkok police transferred in alleged extortion attempt

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Six Bangkok police transferred in alleged extortion attempt | The Thaiger

by Jessada Chantharak

Six Bangkok policemen have been transferred to inactive posts and are the subject of a fact-finding probe into allegations that they raided the home of a 49 year old food vendor and allegedly imposed a bogus 50,000 baht charge in exchange for his ‘freedom’ on the evening of August 10.

Somtam spicy salad vendor Sakchai Naen-udon had on August 13 initially filed a report, but not an official complaint, about the incident with the police. On September 10, he filed a complaint, along with additional information, at the Phayathai precinct in central Bangkok.

Sakchai said that while he was selling somtam at his stall on the night of August 10, his 30 year old daughter came crying to tell him that some 10 plain-clothes policemen had raided their house.

He rushed to his rented home and asked to see a search warrant, but the officers refused to show it to him. Instead, they claimed to have found an unspecified amount of crystal methamphetamine or “ice” – which they also did not show him – and escorted his daughter away.

Sakchai said he followed the police to their office and found his daughter sitting in a dark corner of the building’s ground floor without handcuffs, with one plain-clothes officer standing guard over her, and so he took her home.

The police who later came to his house accused him of helping a fugitive flee and escorted him back to their office, where they told him that he was wanted in an extortion case and must pay a 50,000 baht bail – which he did at the time for fear of of going to jail and out of ignorance of the law, he said.

Feeling he had been subjected to injustice, Sakchai filed a report at the Phayathai precinct about this incident, which he claimed involved a police Sergeant-Major who had a dispute with his son years ago. The arresting team’s Inspector showed up to return the 50,000 baht and asked him to let ‘bygones be bygones’, he said.

Sakchai said he initially wanted to let the incident go quietly but changed his mind after a later getting a phone call from a policeman asking him if he ‘wasn’t afraid to die’. He said he was now determined to press charges.

Metropolitan Police Division 1 chief Pol Maj-General Zenith Samransamruadkit initially signed a September 10 order for the immediate transfer of seven accused officers to inactive positions at the Metropolitan Police Division 1 operations centre pending the results of a 15 day probe. Initially accused were three commissioned officers (one police Major and two police Captains) and four constable officers (three police Sergeant-Majors and one police Corporal).

However Zenith on Wednesday cancelled the transfer of the accused police Corporal on grounds of misidentification after determining he had not been involved, despite the food vendor identifying him.

SOURCE: The Nation



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Bangkok

Bangkok smog: Police on the lookout for dirty exhaust from vehicles

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Bangkok smog: Police on the lookout for dirty exhaust from vehicles | The Thaiger

by Khanathit Srihirundaj

It’s either a knee-jerk reaction, media stunt or something we hope to see a lot more of.

Checking vehicles with plumes of dirty smoke coming out of their exhaust.

To help curb fine-particle dust pollution in Bangkok, traffic police have increased the number of checkpoints where they will check vehicles spewing black exhaust smoke.

The number of checkpoints was increased on Tuesday to 20 from the previous 12, leading to 1,000 vehicles being cited and fined, traffic police commander Pol Maj-General Jirasan Kaewsang-ek said on Wednesday.

Jirasan said diesel-engine vehicles were the main culprits, along with too-old engines, and they together made a large contribution to the 60 per cent of the polluting PM2.5 particulates that were attributed to vehicle engines.

Police are putting an emphasis on removing the exhaust-spewing vehicles from the most pollution-prone areas such as Bung Kum and Chatuchak districts.

As there was insufficient staff for the checkpoints, police would ask that some officials from the Pollution Control Department be assigned to aid them during this period, Jirasan said.

In future, police may impound the vehicles or suspend the vehicle’s use as a more severe punishment, he added.

Bangkok smog: Police on the lookout for dirty exhaust from vehicles | News by The Thaiger Bangkok smog: Police on the lookout for dirty exhaust from vehicles | News by The Thaiger

SOURCE: The Nation

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Bangkok

Bangkok smog: Chatuchak school closes for the rest of the week

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Bangkok smog: Chatuchak school closes for the rest of the week | The Thaiger

A kindergarten in Chatuchak, to the north of central Bangkok, has suspended classes because of air pollution that has landed Bangkok in the top 10 list of worst-polluted cities.

Bangkok still lags far behind some of the world’s most polluted cities, including the Afghani capital Kabul (at 576), Delhi in India (306) and Mongolia’s Ulaanbaatar (300). But the Top 10 worst air-pollution list is not the list Bangkok wants to be in.

Bangkok and Pattaya remain in the ‘unhealthy’ or ‘unsafe’ levels today whilst some cities in northern Thailand are also suffering with poor air quality.

Surang Khamneungnet, director of Jananan Kindergarten in Chatuchak, said pupils had been kept indoors in recent days and the grounds sprayed with water three times a day, but the children had become listless and were eating less.

The school is closed for National Teachers Day today anyway but will remain closed tomorrow and Friday because of the air pollution, she said.

Chulalongkorn University logistics expert Manoj Lohatepanont at a seminar on Tuesday advised schools to consider closing temporarily to reduce health risks for students and curb the number of cars on the roads, one source of PM2.5.

PM Prayut Chan-o-cha separately said the Education Ministry should use its discretion in deciding whether “at-risk” schools should be closed.

SOURCE: The Nation | aqicn.org

Bangkok smog: Chatuchak school closes for the rest of the week | News by The Thaiger Bangkok smog: Chatuchak school closes for the rest of the week | News by The Thaiger

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Crisis meetings in Bangkok today over smog solutions

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Crisis meetings in Bangkok today over smog solutions | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: The Nation

Urgent meetings are being held in Bangkok today to address the acute smog problems in the capital.

The Pollution Control Department and Bangkok Metropolitan Administration are gathering today in their latest efforts to battle with the persistent smog while dust particles continue to blanket the capital with smog levels alarming locals and causing tourists to cancel their holidays.

The meeting was organised after the authorities concerned rushed rushed to find solutions to help ease the problem, including cleaning roads more often, spraying water over Greater Bangkok’s sky (useless), trying to produce artificial rain with cloud-seeding and enforcing strict laws against vehicles emitting excessive exhaust fumes.

PM General Prayut Chan-o-cha “has instructed relevant authorities to introduce additional measures to deal with this situation”, Government Spokesman Puttipong Punnakanta said.

The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) and the Army’s efforts to spray water to ease the pollution on Monday night and yesterday morning did not appear to help much.

For instance, pollution was marginally brought down to 90 from 96 on Monday and to 71 yesterday on Phaholyothin Road in the capital.

Crisis meetings in Bangkok today over smog solutions | News by The Thaiger

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