Ex-policeman in Bt30m lottery dispute claims senior officers told him to lie

national December 13, 2017 01:00

By Suriya Patathayo
The Nation

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A retired policeman yesterday petitioned the national police chief for help in a dispute over Bt30-million lottery winnings.

Former Pol Lieutenant Charoon Wimul claimed two senior police officers in Kanchanaburi province had tried to persuade him to say that he found the lottery tickets that won the big prize in the November 1 draw. “But the truth is that I bought those tickets myself,” he said. 

Charoon and his lawyer, Sittra Biabangkerd, went to Bangkok yesterday from Kanchanaburi to submit the petition to Pol General Chakthip Chaijinda at the National Police Office. 

Pol Colonel Yosawin Hassamon accepted the petition on Chakthip’s behalf. 

Sittra said the two senior policemen apparently tried to distort facts during an interview with the media. “They suggested that my client could not remember the vendor as well as the place or time of the lottery purchase,” Sittra said. “That’s not true.” 

Charoon said although he could not remember the face of the lottery seller, he remembered where he bought the tickets and when. 

Sittra said the actions taken by the local senior officers raised doubts whether they would try to tamper with evidence. The lawyer said the senior policemen also changed information on the case during three different TV interviews. 

“I have submitted clips of the interviews for the national police chief to see,” Sittra said. 

Charoon is contesting allegations that he does not legitimately own the winning lottery tickets.

The allegations were raised by teacher Preecha Kraikruan, who produced a female lottery vendor as a witness that he was the actual buyer of the winning tickets. Preecha has been a regular customer of the vendor.

Preecha said he lost the tickets after purchasing five that eventually won a combined Bt30 million. 

Charoon and Preecha both live in Kanchanaburi, the province where the winning tickets were sold.

Deputy police spokesman Pol Colonel Krisana Pattanacharoen said yesterday that if Charoon was uncomfortable having local police handle the investigation, it was possible that the National Police Office might assign Provincial Police Region 7 to take over the case. 

“The national police chief has already made it clear that the investigation must be fair and in line with the proper process,” he said. 

He added that forensic tests were being conducted to identify the real winner of the Bt30-million contested lottery prize from the November 1 draw. 

Meanwhile, Buri Ram police yesterday announced that latent fingerprint tests had already given police crucial clues about the identity of the real winner of a separate Bt12-million lottery in August. 

Nang Rong Police Station superintendent Pol Colonel Sompop Sangkornthong said tests had not found the latent fingerprints of Phansak Suachoomseang on four winning lottery tickets, which he had claimed were stolen from him after his purchase. 

Phansak lodged a complaint with police about the theft on August 20 after learning of the lottery results in the August 16 draw. 

The four winning lottery tickets are linked to Bt12-million in prizes. 

A couple who lives in Roi Et have already claimed the prizes. 

“Latent fingerprint tests show the fingerprints of the couple on the tickets,” Sompop said.

He added that the couple had cashed in six tickets for Bt18-million prizes.

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