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The Tuhao Case

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  • The Tuhao Case

    Tuhao, wife reunited for Christmas in prison

    Police have arrested Pol Col Wanthanaree Kornchayanan, niece of Pol Gen Pracha Promnok, the former national police chief who acted as Yingluck Shinawatra’s deputy prime minister, and wife of alleged Chinese gangster Chaiyanat “Tuhao” Kornchayanant.

    Officers from the Metropolitan Police Bureau (MPB) arrived at a luxury condominium in Bangkok on Saturday afternoon to arrest Wanthanaree and six others. As is standard police procedure in Bangkok, Tuhao’s wife Wanthanaree and all the other suspects had been given weeks of advanced notice of their arrests.

    Pracha’s niece, Tuhao’s wife Pol Col Wanthanaree Kornchayanan, was arrested at a mansion on Rama V Rd.

    Tuhao’s wife Wanthanaree is a member the foreign affairs sub-division of the Royal Thai Police. She and six other suspects are being questioned and – for reasons that are all too clear – no reporters were invited to the bust, nor allowed anywhere near the session. After questioning, the suspects remained at Yannawa police station.

    Tuhao himself has been in custody since November 23 when he gave himself up to deputy national police chief Pol Gen Surachate Hakparn, but not until “Big Joke” had arrived with platoons of officers and warrants. Tuhao claims he is completely innocent on all counts and turned himself in merely to make life easier for overworked senior police officers.

    Tuhao’s uncle, Pracha Promnok, former national police chief and deputy prime minister, is not involved in the case.

    His is allegedly the leading act in a veritable carnival of criminality. He is accused of massive involvement in the Bangkok drug trade, all along the supply chain from Myanmar and China’s industrial meth production facilities, to the pills scoffed down by super rich Chinese partygoers and homeless meth heads raging at the moon.

    Before his surrender, police searched his 200-million-baht (US$6.3 million) mansion on Rama V Road and a luxury hotel. Subsequently, police raided many locations across Bangkok, including a housing project in Samut Prakan where most of the units were purchased in cash through Thai nominees with links to Tuhao.

    Assets worth about 3 billion baht (US$90 million) have been snaffled by the cops at the behest of massage-parlour-owner-turned-supergrass Chuwit Kamolvisit, who appears to have great influence at the MPB.

    Former sleaze king Chuwit appears to have morphed into the country’s top law enforcer.

    For weeks, Chuwit has been drip-feeding police titbits of information, while hoping to substantially (further) enrich himself through the massive rewards offered for information (5% of assets seized). This week Chuwit’s tap has continued to leak juicy snippets of information to his buddies in law enforcement. This farcical shadow-play should cease immediately. Is it not time for the police to demand to know exactly what Chuwit knows, and to lock him up until he spills all the beans? Far from facilitating the investigation, Chuwit appears to be doing all he can to delay and distract the investigation, milking it for every available baht. Presumably if and when Tuhao is found innocent and released the tub king will face a heavy sentence for obstruction of justice? Perhaps not.

  • #2
    Bangkok court grants bail to Tuhao’s wife for 2 Million THB

    Southern Bangkok Criminal Court granted bail to Pol. Col. Wanthanaree Kornchayanan – the wife of Chinese gangster Tuhao – for securities of 2 million baht this afternoon.

    Yannawa Police arrested and detained Wanthanaree and nine others yesterday on transnational drug and money laundering charges. The court does not usually grant bail to those accused on such serious charges in case they attempt to flee the country before they are sentenced.

    Today, the court granted bail – for 2 million baht each – to five suspects arrested on money laundering charges, including 56 year old Sittikorn Praphacharatwong, 43 year old Suratsawadi Thongpermploy, 50 year old Chatchai Lap-amnoeycharoen, 48 year old Nattawat Sri-orn, 25 year old Pheeraphat Thongpermploy, and 47 year old Pol. Col. Wanthanaree Kornchayanan (Tuhao’s wife). The court denied bail for three defendants accused of money laundering as well as drug charges, namely 49 year old Sittiphaiboon Khamnin and 34 year old Sittiphong Theursattiang who were taken straight to Bangkok Remand Prison and 51 year old Patcharin Ittiwattanna, who was transferred to the Central Women’s Correctional Institution. All nine arrests are connected to the Yannawa Police‘s raid of Jinling Pub back in October, in which the police discovered a multitude of illegal drugs such as heroin, ecstasy, and ‘happy water.’

    Police opened up a can of worms once they started to investigate Chaiyanat “Tuhao” Kornchayanant, a Chinese national with a fake Thai ID who is alleged to be the kingpin of a sprawling Chinese criminal gang in Thailand. When police raided Tuhao’s mansion in Bangkok, Tuhao was nowhere to be found. Police were welcomed by his wife Wanthanaree, who is a police colonel for the foreign affairs division and niece of former national police chief Pol. Gen. Pracha Promnok.

    Shortly after his arrest, police seized eight businesses in Phuket owned by Tuhao used for money laundering. Tuhao’s wife, who swore she knew nothing of her husband’s criminal history, had shares in several of the “businesses.” The gangster was found to own a private jet which was seized by crime-fighter Surachate “Big Joke” Hakparn. Tuhao’s Chinese gang allegedly bought 50 houses valued at 45-60 million baht each in a luxury village in the Soi Laselle area of Bangkok, with cash. The gang’s constant partying drove the remaining 16 Thai families out of the village, reports say. Tuhao denies all charges filed against him.


    • #3
      Tuhao’s wife dismissed from Royal Thai Police

      Pol Col Wanthanaree Kornchayanant was dismissed from the Royal Thai Police Monday, along with five other officers suspected of illegal involvement with her husband Chaiyanat “Tuhao” Kornchayanant. Top cop Gen Damrongsak Kittiprapas issued the dismissal orders himself, according to Bangkok Post. Wanthanaree was arrested three weeks ago on drug and money laundering charges and released on 2-million-baht bail the next day. Wanthanaree, was colonel in the foreign affairs division of the RTP and is the niece of deputy PM and former national police chief Pracha Promnok.

      The other five officers drummed out of the force include the superintendent of Bangkok’s Yannawa police station and the sergeant who was his chauffeur. They are accused of demanding 600,000 THB to allow confiscated vehicles to be released following the raid on the Jinling nightclub. During the raid, 99 Chinese partygoers tested positive for drugs while police seized recreational narcotics and about 30 luxury vehicles. The raid is generally seen as the beginning of the Tuhao affair which is set to be a major issue in the forthcoming election, at least in Bangkok. Also dismissed were two investigators at Yannawa Police Station and a deputy traffic inspector at Lat Phrao Station. They are accused of aiding the temporary release of Chinese suspects who subsequently escaped. The five officers dismissed from the Royal Thai Police face criminal charges and an investigation by the National Anti-Corruption Commission. Police chief Damrongsak said the Jinling investigation will be completed by the Attorney General’s Friday, January 20 deadline. The police will detain Tuhao until that date.