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Officer charged over tsunami funds misappropriation

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Officer charged over tsunami funds misappropriation | Thaiger

BANGKOK (Kom Chad Luek): The Royal Thai Police Disciplinary Division has charged a high-ranking officer in the Foreign Affairs Division over alleged improprieties in the use of funds for the Thailand Tsunami Victims Identification (TTVI) center.

Col Chaiyaporn Wannaprapa, Deputy Commander of the Disciplinary Division of the Royal Thai Police, on February 12 announced that Col Pornprasert Karnjanarin was formally notified of the investigation against him just two days before a resignation letter he had tendered was set to take effect, on February 10.

Col Pornprasert, Deputy Commander of the Royal Thai Police Foreign Affairs Division, will have his pension benefits seized unless he is able to prove himself innocent, Col Chaiyaporn said.

“The investigating panel has issued Col Pornprasert a two-part summons ordering him to appear and hear the charges against him and also notifying him that if he fails to appear within 15 days a decision will be rendered and punishment imposed based solely on the facts already collected by the panel,” Col Chaiyaporn said.

“From our investigation, we believe that Col Pornprasert cannot prove his innocence and had thus been trying to avoid the consequences by reporting in sick until his resignation took effect,” he added.

Col Pornprasert said that it was important that justice be proved in the case because the image of the Royal Thai Police was at stake.

The Disciplinary Division will have one year to conclude the case before the statute of limitations runs out, he said.

It was also reported that since the alleged impropriety, which first came to light in 2006, Col Pornprasert had changed his first name to Paramate.

The case made international headlines after the ambassadors of seven countries that donated funds to the TTVI requested then-Police Commissioner Kowit Wattana to launch an independent audit of how 88 million baht in donated funds were used.

 

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