Justice team faces grilling

national December 08, 2017 01:00

By SIVA LOHO
THE NATION

Net widens in Jomsap perjury case.



POLICE WILL interrogate seven officials from the Justice Ministry about their role in hit-and-run convict Jomsap Saenmuangkhot’s efforts to seek a retrial. 

Following the Supreme Court’s rejection of Jomsap’s request for a retrial, which cited evidence of a plot to hire a scapegoat to claim responsibility for the fatal accident, police are pursuing perjury charges against people who were allegedly involved.

Chartchai Tosinthiti, Pol Major Satapong Cheumahawan, Baramee Janpisai, Pol Lt-Colonel Watcharas Chalermsuksan, Lt-Colonel Naponpong Kamon-ars, Thitinai Patikbutr and Surasak Kamwiang will be summoned for questioning today.

“Our interrogation will go deep because these seven officials were involved in several crucial steps, such as bringing witnesses defending Jomsap to police investigators and courts,” Provincial Police Region 4 deputy commander Pol Maj-General Tanasak Rittidejpaiboon said yesterday.

He added that the seven officials had formed a second team from the Justice Ministry to handle Jomsap’s case after she submitted a petition asking for help. 

The second team was established in January this year after members of the first team retired, Tanasak said. 

The members of the first team were separately interrogated for five hours at the Provincial Police Region 4 headquarters yesterday. Those officials are Nitit Phurikupt, Pol Lt-Colonel Apimuk Sakthana, Pol Lt-Colonel Photiwat Tim-udom, Siwarat Preukpaiboon, Pongsa Ratree and Airawan Sawetkruthara.

“They have denied any wrongdoing,” Tanasak said. 

At present, both Jomsap and her close friend Suriya Nuancharoen are being held at the Nakhon Phanom Prison because of alleged efforts to hire another man, Sap Wapi, to claim responsibility for a fatal accident in 2005 that Jomsap has been convicted of. An elderly man was killed in the crash.

Another teacher, Rojana Chantarat, faces several charges for her alleged role in a plot to exonerate Jomsap. 

Rojana was yesterday charged with three counts of providing false evidence to a court, perjury and illegal association. 

A close friend of former teacher Jomsap since childhood, Rojana yesterday denied any wrongdoing. 

Rojana’s lawyer, Chitanon Chaisongmuang, said yesterday his client had told him that she had not been involved in preparing false evidence. 

Rojana is on the record vehemently speaking up in Jomsap’s defence and saying during TV interviews that she had followed the evidence and tracked down Sap.

In one interview on January 10, Rojana was depicted so positively that several social media commentators labelled her a “female spy”. 

After denying any wrongdoing in front of police, Rojana was released on bail yesterday. 

Officials from the Justice Ministry were also summoned yesterday to provide information about their roles in Jomsap’s case. 

Jomsap was convicted and jailed for causing the fatal hit-and-run accident and eventually released on a royal pardon. However, after her release she still insisted that she was innocent and asked for help from the Justice Ministry, which assisted her petition for a retrial. 

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