The Department of Special Investigation (DSI) has suspended five officers accused of embezzlement and bribery in connection with last month’s raid on the home of the former consul-general of the Republic of Nauru in Sathon district.
DSI spokeswoman Pichaya Tharakornsanti said the suspension is in line with regulations to make sure that the officers being probed for alleged malfeasance will not interfere with the investigation.
They are accused of embezzling and extorting money in exchange for the release of 11 Chinese suspects who were arrested at the house on Dec 22 in a joint operation between the DSI and the Patrol and Special Operation Division, better known as the 191 police.
The raid came after the DSI received a request from the Vice Consul-General of Nauru on Dec 9, saying suspicious looking individuals had been using the property. The search led to the seizure of 2.5 million baht and the arrest of a Chinese maid, while news later broke that there was an inconsistency with the amount of money that was reportedly seized.
The search team is now under investigation over a missing 5.5 million baht it found at the house and another 4 million in bribes in exchange for the release of 11 Chinese nationals found at the site.
The DSI team consisted of five DSI officials, including a secretary of former DSI chief Traiyarit Temahiwong who was transferred last Wednesday to the Central Institute of Forensic Science to serve as acting director.
Meanwhile, Pol Maj Suriya Singhakamol, acting DSI director-general, has appointed Ms Pichaya as the new DSI spokeswoman and Pittayaporn Churat as deputy spokeswoman, according to the DSI.