INVESTIGATION of a viral video shared by a female Chinese tourist claiming to have paid for police escort from the airplane to the hotel showed that some policemen have been using their free time and their modified personal vehicles to offer this service, Matichon newspaper said today (Jan. 23).
The three policemen seen in this video clip, Pol. Capt. Sompol Phinyosamosorn, a deputy inspector of Tourist Police Division One’s Operation Division Three which is responsible for Suvarnabhumi Airport, and Pol. Sgt. Thanakorn Nukulthanakit and Pol. Sgt. Thanawat Simakachonboon, attached to the Traffic Police Division, were transferred to the headquarters yesterday.
The two traffic policemen did not today show up for questioning by Pol. Col. Sukit Arunrerkthawin, deputy commander of this division who is heading the investigation.
However the tourist policeman has given a full account of all that happened, Pol. Maj. Gen. Archayon Kraithong, the police spokesman said.
Investigation revealed that one of the two traffic policemen had been assigned to lead Deputy Prime Minister-cum-Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai’s motorcade. He had been seconded from traffic duty to this service on March 26, 2022 and on June 1, 2022 his assignment was extended till March 26, 2023.
It appears that policemen assigned to lead ministers’ motorcades had started running this service in their free time.
It was also found that the car with police logo and siren on it is a private one and not an official vehicle similar to the big bike escorting the tourist that had flashing lights and siren installed.
Modifying a private vehicle this way is a serious disciplinary offence and it is for the chiefs of the two divisions to decide how the three policemen are to be punished.
Top: The Chinese female tourist who said everything is for sale in Thailand, left, and the off-duty policeman escorting her car to the hotel. Photo: Matichon
Front Page: The big bike and private car were modified to appear to be police vehicles. Photo: Matichon Weekly