Connect with us


Phuket Opinion: Time to rein in rogue cops

Legacy Phuket Gazette



PHUKET: Provincial Police Commander Choti Chavalviwat should be applauded for getting personally involved in the investigation into the attack on a teenage couple who claim to have been assaulted by two sons of a Thalang Police officer on St Valentine’s Day (story here).

Reports of assault involving minors are all too common in Thalang, which has a history of teenage gang violence going back several generations. The case in question is especially sensitive, however, because of the victims’ claim that the police officer himself was directly involved in the attack, having restrained the male victim while one of his sons threatened him with a firearm.

The allegations are disturbing in several regards, including why the officer got involved in the dispute rather than trying to diffuse it and, just as importantly, how the officer’s son came into possession of a firearm.

Cases such as this are always potentially explosive because of the widespread belief, held by a large majority of Thais, that police officers – as well as their children and other family members – are allowed to operate above the very laws they are sworn to uphold.

The same belief also applies to members of rich and powerful families, who are also regarded as being above the law by the average citizen. There is no lack of examples in the national media to back up this way of thinking, which seems to apply to people on both sides of the current political divide. Even the son of one sitting Cabinet member is widely believed to have gotten away with murder due to his father’s political connections.

It is this sense of social injustice and inequality, of course, that is a primary obstacle to Thailand’s national development. In addition to fostering the perfect social environment for corruption to flourish, it also creates a collective mindset that protest – which almost always comes with the threat of violence – is the only available path to justice. We see this played out again and again, both locally and on the national stage, with needless loss of life, untold property damage and devastating impact to our economy.

If their allegations prove to be true, the couple who went to the Phuket Press Club to report the abuse should be commended for their bravery; even if, by their own admission, they were acting out of fear.

As Maj Gen Choti is probably by now aware, Thalang Police District has been the site of numerous anti-police protests in the past. In typical fashion, these end with the lightning transfer of the officer or officers involved, who are seldom, if ever, prosecuted.

Let us hope against hope that in this case the circumstances will be fairly and thoroughly investigated and, if sufficient evidence is found, the case tried in the Criminal Court system, with the officer stripped of his rank if found guilty.


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forums
🔔 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join YouTube for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


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

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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

Follow Thaiger by email:

Politics3 mins ago

Official detained after spreading rumour of planned coup to oust PM

Business30 mins ago

Thai AirAsia suspends flights, cuts salaries as financial woes continue

Coronavirus (Covid-19)50 mins ago

Monday Covid Update: 17,970 new cases and 178 deaths

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Phuket60 mins ago

Phuket sealed off from tomorrow in bid to curb virus spread, save sandbox

Coronavirus Vaccines1 hour ago

Bangkok vaccination centres shut down at weekend due to vaccine shortages

Thailand6 hours ago

Thailand conservation adds 17 rare Indochinese tigers this year

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Pattaya7 hours ago

Man falls off 4th story roof only breaking arm and chin

Thailand12 hours ago

Family finds long lost man after he is rescued from 17 metre well

Coronavirus (Covid-19)14 hours ago

16 new dark red provinces and restrictions extended to August 16

Hua Hin15 hours ago

Hua Hin Maya Club execs get 3 months for superspreader event

Myanmar16 hours ago

Thai candidate selected as ASEAN envoy to Myanmar

Coronavirus (Covid-19)17 hours ago

Foreigners able to register on vaccine site despite data leaks, glitches

Thailand18 hours ago

Covid UPDATE: 18,027 infections, provincial totals

Thailand1 day ago

Covid UPDATE Sunday: 18,027 infections, expat vaccine registration

Transport1 day ago

August flight plans: Bangkok Airways, Nok Air, Thai Lion

Thailand5 months ago

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

Tourism5 months ago

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

Phuket5 months ago

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

Tourism5 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

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

Tourism5 months ago

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

Thailand6 months ago

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

Thailand6 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8