AFTER a motorcycle rider together with a pillion passenger threw two ping-pong bombs at the entrance of 1st Infantry Regiment compound on Vibhavadi Rangsit where Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha’s residence is located last evening (Apr. 10), police today arrested a well-known political rapper for having stored 30 such explosives in his house but as yet are uncertain the two cases are related, TV Channel 7 said.
Bang Sue police station are going through video footage showing the motorcycle rider and his companion throwing the two ping-pong bombs at the military compound with these landing at a lawn opposite the guard post.
At the same time Tha Rua police station arrested the rapper, Mr.Thanayut, or Book (surname withheld), 20, after a neighbour reported that he/she had heard an explosive go off at his house and a search uncoverd 30 ping-pong bombs.
The rapper told police that some demonstrators had asked him to keep these explosives at his house months ago. Yesterday when he joined the commemoration of the violent crackdown on April 10, 2010 at the October 14 Memorial he had taken a few of these explosives along but did not use them. Upon returning home on his motorcycle one of them rolled off and exploded.
The Human Rights Lawyers web page said three persons were arrested for possessing explosives and aside from Thanayut, who was nabbed soon after midnight today, the other two are a 26-year-old man and 18-year-old youth who were rounded up at 4 p.m. just as they were heading for the commemorative event.
The lawyers added that police had found firecrackers and flares at Thanayut’s house and saw that he was slightly injured by shrapnel. Thanayut has denied throwing ping-pong bombs at the military compound with Bang Sue police filing a charge of conspiring to cause a bombing and carrying weapons in public while Tha Rua police have filed a charge of possessing bombs.
Aside from going through surveillance camera video clips, police are checking whether the rapper’s motorcycle is the same as the one ridden by the two suspects who threw the ping-pong bombs into the military compound, but as yet they are uncertain he is behind the attack.
The Metropolitan Police Investigation Division said they had already worked out the escape route and are now in the process of finding out who owned the motorcycle used in the attack.
Meanwhile Mr. Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, a spokesman for the Prime Minister’s Office, said Gen. Prayut came to work at the Government House as usual today. He has not issued any orders over the ping-pong bomb incident because details are not in yet.
Police checking the stretch of Viphawadi Rangsit road outside the 1st Infantry Regiment compound housing Prime Minister’s Prayut Chan-o-cha’s residence last night after two ping-pong bombs were flung in. The Thai headline says, “Suspect held – bombs thrown near Prime Minister’s house.” Photo: TV Channel 7