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Premchai wants to move the case to another court. The Prosector’s not happy.

The Thaiger

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Premchai wants to move the case to another court. The Prosector’s not happy. | The Thaiger
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Haven’t heard much about the Premchai Karnasuta case in the past month? There have been moves behind the scenes to have the case moved to the Region 7 Criminal Court in Samut Songkhram province.

Thai PBS is reporting that the public prosecutor in charge of the Thungyai illegal hunting case has objected to the request of Italian-Thai Development boss Premchai Karnasuta to have his case transferred from Thong Phaphum provincial court in Kanchanaburi to the Region 7 Criminal Court’s anti-corruption litigation in Samut Songkhram province.

Region 7 special prosecutor of criminal litigation Mr Somjate Amnuaysawat told Thai PBS today (Thursday) that he wondered what was happening, saying the illegal hunting case was the primary case and could be tried separately from the bribery case in which Premchai and another defendant, Mr Yong Dodkrua, were already indicted at the court in Samut Songkhram.

He also pointed that since officials of Thungyai Naresuan wildlife sanctuary were based in Kanchanaburi province, he wondered whether it would be convenient for them to travel to Samut Songkhram to attend the hearings.

However, he said the Thong Phaphum prosecutor had already submitted his objection against the requested transfer of the illegal hunting case to the Thong Phaphum provincial court for consideration.

The Thong Phaphum court on Wednesday decided to submit Premchai’s request to the Appeals Court for consideration. The court also decided to adjourn the hearing scheduled Wednesday to August 27 when a ruling from the Appeals Court is expected to be announced in response to the request.

Meanwhile, former attorney-general Trakul Vinitchaipark wrote in his Facebook post that it has been 116 days since the illegal hunting case was exposed and it is steadily disappearing from the memory of the public.

Read more of the story from Thai PBS HERE.

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Chon Buri

Chon Buri fire kills 1, injures another

Caitlin Ashworth

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Chon Buri fire kills 1, injures another | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Facebook: Eastern Firefighters

A building in Chon Buri caught fire yesterday afternoon, killing 1 person and seriously injuring another. The fire started on the second floor of the 4-storey building on Sukhumvit Road and it took firefighters an hour to extinguish.

The second floor was destroyed and a burnt body was found in one of the rooms. Another person was severely injured and taken to the hospital.

Investigators are still trying to identify the body and determine the cause of the fire. Witnesses nearby say they saw smoke coming out from the building’s second floor before the flames became visible.

SOURCE: Pattaya News

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Thailand

Expert says all rail crossings should be upgraded after fatal train-bus collision

Caitlin Ashworth

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Expert says all rail crossings should be upgraded after fatal train-bus collision | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Facebook: @pr8riew

After the fatal freight train-charter bus collision earlier this month, authorities are looking into ways to make the rail crossings safer and to prevent potentially deadly incidents from happening in the future.

An expert in rail engineering says all rail crossings need to upgraded, urgently, while unofficial or illegal crossings should either be permanently closed off or upgraded with the proper safety equipment. Unofficial crossings are those that are used by locals, but are not approved by the State Railways of Thailand.

Chairperson of the Rail Engineering Committee at the Engineering Institute of Thailand, Rattapoohm Parichatprecha, gave suggestions about how to improve the rail crossings after an incident in Chachoengsao. On October 10, a train collided with a charter bus crossing the railway, killing 18 and injuring 44 who were on their way to a merit-making ceremony. Officials say the signal was broken and the crossing didn’t have a barrier gate to block traffic.

Then, a passenger train collided with a car, killing a woman and injuring 2 others at a railway crossing in Phetchaburi’s Khao Yai district on October 15.

The State Railway of Thailand says an average of 77 railway crossing incidents happen each year, killing an average of 28 people yearly and injuring 74. Some crossings are known as “black spots” where accidents occur more frequently, sometimes up to 4 times a year.

Rattapoohm says all legal crossings upgrade the warning signs and barricades, but warns that revamping the crossings could be expensive. In a previous report, Transport Minister Saksiam Chidchob acknowledged that the State Railways of Thailand’s budget to install railroad crossing gates has been cut.

The size of the rail crossing as well as the direction also comes into play, according to Rattapoohm.

“The width of the crossing must not be at least three metres. The road should also cut through the rail tracks in a straight line and not in a diagonal direction which would create blind spots.”

He says tree canopies must also be trimmed regularly to prevent branches and leaves from obstructing the view for both train conductors and drivers crossing the railway.

For illegal crossings, Rattapoohm says some can stay put since they are just used by the locals who are familiar with the terrain and know where the blind spots are, but says they should make sure the unofficial crossings stay off Google Maps.

“People outside the areas are unaware of the lurking danger the illegal crossings pose and many just follow directions in Google Map.”

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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World

Malaysian PM called to quit, criticised for “abuse of power” during Covid-19 crisis

Caitlin Ashworth

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Malaysian PM called to quit, criticised for “abuse of power” during Covid-19 crisis | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Facebook: Muhyiddin Yassin

While protesters in Thailand are calling on PM Prayut Chan-o-cha to resign, the Malaysia PM Muhyiddin Yassin is experiencing similar calls after he attempted to declare a state of emergency amid a rise in Covid-19 infections, but the request was rejected by the king.

Some say the prime minister’s attempt to impose the order was intended to suspend parliament and curb the government process. Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim recently claimed he had the majority of support in parliament and challenged the prime minister.

When Muhyiddin requested a state of emergency, Anwar said the prime minister was trying to “curb the parliamentary process.” He said using the Covid-19 crisis as an excuse to suspend sessions is an “abuse of power” and called the state of emergency request a “descent into dictatorship and authoritarianism.”

“A state of emergency is declared when there is a threat to our national security. But when the government is itself the source of that threat, then a state of emergency is nothing more than the descent into dictatorship and authoritarianism. I strongly advise Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin to consider the legacy of these actions he is taking out of self interest and selfishness.”

Anwar released another media statement after the King’s refusal saying it “affirms the strength of the constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy.”

King Al-Sultan Abdullah rejected the emergency order request yesterday. The prime minister holds a slim majority in parliament, but with his request rejected by the king, his hold on power is seen as getting weaker. Now some leaders are calling on Muhyiddin to resign.

Ahmad Puad Zarkashi, a senior leader in the United Malays National Organisation made a Facebook post calling on the prime minister to resign.

“Thankfully, His Majesty the King was not influenced by the political game that could drag the country into more critical territory… The people’s wellbeing is more important. By right, Muhyiddin should step down.”

Opposition lawmaker Wong Chen calls the proposal for a state of emergency “malicious” and says the prime minister should resign or fire ministers who proposed the emergency orders.

SOURCES: Reuters | Twitter: Anwar Ibrahim

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