The verdict in the “black leopard” alleged poaching case against construction tycoon Premchai Karnasuta and three associates is set to be given March 19, after final arguments were heard on Friday.
Thong Pha Phum prosecutor Panomrit Homerangsakul assigned his deputy Krissada Chuto to submit closing arguments to the court at 9.20am on Friday followed by defence lawyer Wipach Ampornklinkaew's closing arguments on behalf of all four defendants.
Premchai, president of listed construction giant Italian-Thai Development, was arrested and charged with poaching in Thungyai Naresuan Wildlife Sanctuary last February, along with three associates – Yong Dodkrua, Thanee Thummat and Nathee Riamsaen.
Six allegations, including illegally carrying firearms in public, hunting protected wildlife, and poaching inside the wildlife reserve, have been laid against Premchai, while Thanee, Yong and Nathee are facing eight, seven and five allegations, respectively.
Thong Pha Phum Provincial Court had set aside 10 sessions for the prosecution witnesses to take the stand, and six sessions for defence witnesses.
However, the defence witness session ended a day early, on December 26, because the final witness, Thanee Thummat, suffered from high blood pressure and unable to testify.
The court told both sides to provide closing arguments on Friday so the verdict can be reached by March 19.