'Heirs' of Bai Khan fortune arrested
Three people claiming to be heirs of an influential Pashtun family based in Saraburi have been arrested for allegedly providing false documents to prove their ties, the Department of Special Investigation said yesterday.The DSI says it discovered that Watcharee Jantherdthai was not the spouse of Somphong Pongsawang, alias Yong Bai Khan, as she claimed and hence her daughter Chayanis Phongsawang was not related to him, DSI director-general Tarit Pengdith said.
Malinee Phongsawang, filed a statement with district officials confirming Chayanis's birth, has also been arrested.
The three women were apprehended last Friday and the DSI is prosecuting them for fraud. According to the statement filed by the three women, Watcharee was Yong's common-law spouse and that Malinee had witnessed Chayanis's birth at home.
Separately, a few years ago, a court appointed Rassamee Khan, a member of the Pashtun Bai Khan clan originally from Pakistan, as executor of Yong's assets, which were worth hundreds of millions baht.
Sobeida Pongsawang, who was fathered by Yong and born to his actress wife Sathana Wongsawang, better known as Wandee Sritrang, later complained that Rassamee had sold three plots of land owned by her father in Chiang Mai without giving her a fair share of the money. She also claimed that Rassamee had threatened to harm her and kidnap her young daughter.
Her complaints were lodged with the DSI, which pursued the case and apprehended the three women.
Sobeida's mother died in mysterious circumstances in 1975 at the age of 25, when she was at the peak of her career and living with Yong. Yong was shot dead in 2002. Both murders have never been solved.