THALANG: The entire team of police officers investigating the double murder of Prasert and Thavorn Trairat have been transferred after an internal probe into their conduct by officers from Provincial Police regional headquarters in Surat Thani. K. Prasert and K. Thavorn, the parents of Thepkrasattri Mayor Prasong Trairat, were gunned down in their shophouse home on May 5 last year. Pol Col Ronapong Saikaew, Superintendent of Investigation for Provincial Police Region 8, which includes Phuket, told the Gazette that the internal probe was launched after he received complaints from three of the four people charged in the case. Col Ronapong said he had received a complaint from Wipa Jantong and her husband Sompong Jantong, who were charged with conspiracy to murder K. Prasert and K. Thavorn. They were later released on bail and are currently on trial. In their complaint, they appealed for Region 8 police to investigate the police officers involved in the murder investigation. Suchart Maneesuwan, who had confessed to playing a role in the murder, also filed a complaint against the investigating officers, Col Ronapong said, for breaking one of his ribs. Suchart admitted identifying the victims for the alleged gunman, whom he identified as Pol Sgt Maj Chalaw Ramduang. Col Ronapong said that, as a result of the investigation into the complaints, all officers involved in the double murder investigation had been transferred to other provinces. “The Phuket officers investigating this case were found to be involved in injuring K. Suchart, and to have conducted a dishonest investigation. They have been ordered to move to other provinces,” Col Ronapong said. However, he would not name the officers transferred, or say when the order was issued or where they had been posted to. “People already know the truth – that a police officer was the real kingpin who hired the gunman,” Col Ronapong said. “The case has now been sent to the courts, so we [Region 8 police] can’t be involved in it anymore,” he added. Col Ronapong also confirmed that the alleged gunman, Sgt Maj Chalaw, formerly of the Sikow District Police in Trang, is still being sought by police.
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