Petitioner Srisuwan’s assets to be frozen

Petitioner Srisuwan's assets to be frozen

Petitioner Srisuwan's assets to be frozen
Police arrest activist Srisuwan Janya at his house in Pathum Thani on Jan 26. (Photo supplied)

Serial petitioner Srisuwan Janya’s assets may be frozen by the Anti-Money Laundering Office (Amlo) at the request of police working on the extortion case against him.

The Anti-Corruption Division (ACD) convened a meeting with investigators on Monday to discuss the asset freeze request the agency plans to submit to Amlo. The meeting was called by ACD commander Pol Maj Gen Prasong Chalermpan.

The move comes after investigators examined Mr Srisuwan’s money trail and found many assets, including at least five houses worth an estimated 15 million baht, were suspected to have been acquired illegally, according to Central Investigation Bureau deputy commissioner Pol Maj Gen Jaroonkiat Pankaew.

Other assets registered in Mr Srisuwan’s name, which may also be subject to a freeze, include title deeds, collectables, furniture, ivories and amulets.

Mr Srisuwan and three other suspects — Yoswaris Chuklom, also known as Jeng Dokjik, Phimnattha Chiraphutthiphak, as well as Eakluck Wareechol — are accused of trying to extort cash from Rice Department (RD) chief Natthakit Khongthip after he was appointed to the director-general role.

Ms Yoswaris served previously as a member of a civil servant working group appointed by Deputy Prime Minister and Energy Minister Pirapan Salirathavibhaga, while Ms Phimnattha is a former United Thai Nation Party election candidate.

Police were expanding their probe into other extortion cases committed by the Srisuwan group. The deputy commissioner said the investigators were looking at more than 10 such cases as some witnesses were called to give statements.

Pol Maj Gen Jaroonkiat flatly denied the charges against Mr Srisuwan were politically motivated, adding that a person close to Mr Srisuwan is due to answer charges on Thursday.