Connect with us

Opinion

Opinion: Tackle criminals with technology

Published

 on 

Col Kraithong Chanthongbai, 60, from Phang Nga province, is the superintendent of the Phuket City Police. He earned a PhD in public administration from Bangkokthonburi University, and has been superintendent since January this year.

Here, he talks about the role of technology in the investigation process, problems Phuket police face in solving crimes, and different approaches taken in cases involving foreigners and Thais.

PHUKET: Crimes are unpredictable and challenging for police to solve. The time it takes police to close a case depends on how much evidence we have; sometimes there is enough evidence, and sometimes not.

I will admit that technology has greatly improved our ability to search for clues, as we can consult CCTV footage, GPS tracking information, pictures and video for relevant information.

Technology plays an especially important role in our investigations when there are no eyewitnesses to a crime. Phuket has CCTV now for almost the entire island, so we are able to identify and track down many criminals using this footage.

One problem we do face, though, concerns mobile phone information and GPS tracking. Thailand does not have top-of-the-line technology in that respect. In addition, mobile network carriers are not very co-operative when it comes to releasing information to police. They are always concerned with customers’ privacy. This can really slow down an investigation.

I think all parties – police, mobile network carriers and customers – should come together and suggest ways to improve this system for solving crimes.

Besides adequate technology and access to information, the quality of human resources plays a big part in our ability to carry out our duties as a police force. We have enough police officers to do what we need to do, but the quality of officers, in some cases, is lacking.

It is important that the government address this problem, and employ more stringent and strict standards when choosing citizens to enter positions in law enforcement. We need more quality police on the island.

Phuket is very unique in that both Thai people and foreigners commit serious crimes here. We must have police who are equipped to handle any case assigned to them.

Phuket police take different approaches when handling a crime committed by a Thai versus a crime committed by a foreigner, as each type of criminal has his or her own style. For instance, foreigners often commit crimes in teams. The criminals are frequently more professional and take time to strategize.

Take ATM skimming cases for example. These criminals are professionals. They understand technology, they understand Phuket and they know what to do.

The process of finding and arresting suspects also varies depending on their nationality. For foreigners, police have to consult both local police databases as well as immigration databases in order to track down a suspect. We also have to be careful with evidence and questioning witnesses to ensure that we have accurate information before requesting an arrest warrant from the court.

Like our issues with mobile phone information access, we often run into problems with police and immigration databases, as our technology isn’t as advanced as in Western countries. This often leads to long investigations when foreigners are involved.

For Thai criminals, however, the process is a bit quicker and easier, as we have more accessible data about our own citizens. We can also consult relatives, friends and acquaintances to help us track the suspect down.

Each case is different. In my experience, the most difficult cases involve murders and hiding of bodies and evidence, and cases which involve high-ranking or well-known locals. We must always be careful and make sure we have enough evidence for the court.

We always do our best to uphold the law and bring criminals to justice, but we also must have co-operation from other local authorities and parties involved. When it comes to battling crime, we must all work together.

 

Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Visa53 seconds ago

Overstay crackdown uses facial recognition tech

Thailand56 mins ago

Father dies trying to save son from teenage gang

Songkhla1 hour ago

Railway bomb kills three in southern Thailand

Sponsored4 hours ago

Challenges of starting a business in Thailand as a foreigner

Thailand2 hours ago

Restaurant in Japan urges Thai tourists to flush tissues down the toilet

Thailand3 hours ago

Frenchman arrested for scamming Thai woman out of 2 million baht in Bangkok

Thailand3 hours ago

CAAT warns Thai VietJet for cancelling three Phuket – Bangkok flights in one day

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Entertainment3 hours ago

VIDEO: Harry and Meghan haters out in full force ahead of Netflix series

Crime3 hours ago

VIDEO: Policeman fined 500 baht for blocking ambulance in northeast Thailand

Weather4 hours ago

Flood warning for 11 southern provinces

Thailand5 hours ago

Apple plans to move production out of China and into Thailand | GMT

Crime19 hours ago

Everything stolen from Danish man’s 3 homes on Koh Samui

Vietnam21 hours ago

Thai Vietjet resumes Bangkok-Da Lat flights after 3-year break

Chon Buri21 hours ago

A mother and baby escape blaze in Chon Buri with severe burns

Politics21 hours ago

Whole new world of censorship pain on its way to Thailand

Technology21 hours ago

Apple plans to move production out of China and into Thailand

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism2 years ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending