Three police officers taken into custody for allegedly helping former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra slip out of the country were granted temporary release on Friday morning.
Police sources said the three were interrogated at Royal Thai Police headquarters Thursday night and past midnight on Friday.
Meanwhile a bronze Toyota Camry bearing the licence plate Chor Khor 5323 was seized in Nakhon Pathom province.
The sources said four fake licence plates allegedly used in the affair had also been seized.
They said the three men could only be interrogated as witnesses since the court has yet to issue any arrest warrants regarding Yingluck’s flight from justice.
Once questioned, they were allowed to go without being charged, but the sources said they could still be charged with using fake licence plates.
In that event, the case would be handed over to Pathumwan police.
The sources said Deputy Police Commissioner General Pol General Srivara Ransibrahmanakul grilled the trio from 10.30pm Thursday to 1am on Friday.
Then at 2am, Srivara took them to confirm that the Camry car seized was the one used by Yingluck in her escape to Sa Kaeo, from where she is believed to have entered Cambodia.
The sources said one of the three men questioned is a police colonel who is “close” to a former Metropolitan Police Bureau chief.
They said the seized Camry belongs to a Bangkok woman who had not used it since 2012. It was one of two cars seen in CCTV surveillance recordings supposedly showing Yingluck being driven past a military facility in Sa Kaeo.
Yingluck apparently pulled off a dramatic escape in the day or two before the Supreme Court’s Criminal Division for Political Office Holders was to deliver its verdict on her on August 25.
She was tried for malfeasance over her government’s handling of the costly rice-pledging scheme.
The read of the verdict was postponed until September 27, when it will be presented in her absence if necessary.
If found guilty, the former prime minister could face up to 10 years in jail and a lifetime ban from politics.
Yingluck’s current whereabouts are unknown. She has not been seen in public since August 23, but it has been reported that she has joined her elder brother Thaksin Shinawatra in Dubai, where he has lived for years in self-exile, another fugitive from Thai justice.