Police met Nopporn to investigate complaint before he fled

national December 05, 2014 01:00


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Arrest warrant issued for another suspect alledgedly involved in abduction

POLICE YESTERDAY confirmed that they had met and interviewed fugitive billionaire businessman Nopporn Suppipat after an alleged victim filed a police complaint in June accusing him of intimidation to write down a Bt120-million debt to just Bt20 million, senior police detective Pol Maj-General Sombat Milinthajinda said yesterday.
Nopporn has reportedly fled the country.
The complainant, Bunthit Chotwitthayakul, said he and Nopporn had jointly invested in a venture. Reports later said that Bunthit had filed a police complaint accusing Nopporn, president of Wind Energy Holding – the largest wind-power firm in Asia – of abducting and intimidating him to write down a large part of the Bt120-million debt.
Sombat said Nopporn left Thailand early on Sunday, while an arrest warrant was issued the next day.
A senior immigration policeman in Chanthaburi, Pol Lt-Colonel Phansak Worrawiboolsawas, said Nopporn must have been led out of Thailand by scouts well versed in jungle trekking and with good knowledge about active minefields on Cambodian soil across the Ban Phakkhard border crossing in Chanthaburi’s Pong Nam Ron district, from where he escaped.
An unconfirmed report yesterday evening said a man who resembled Nopporn was being detained by Cambodian authorities at a casino for possessing a large amount of money and valuables. This has neither been double-checked nor independently verified.
Metropolitan Police Bureau chief Lt-General Sriwara Sangsiphrammanakul yesterday revealed a new suspect linked to former Central Investigation Bureau chief Pongpat Chayapan’s network and with alleged ties to Nopporn. The man was identified as Jeab, whose sketch police released.
Jeab, according to the arraignment document submitted to the martial court for approval of an arrest warrant, was a middleman and was known to have introduced Nopporn to a suspect working for Pongpat – Chakarn Phakphoom – to abduct Bunthit. Both Chakarn and Pongpat are now in detention.
Sriwara dismissed as rumours reports about Nopporn being in the custody of Cambodian police, despite police intelligence reports of him leaving Thailand for an unspecified destination.
Royal Thai Police spokesman Lt-General Prawut Thawornsiri said police had no clues on the whereabouts of Nopporn and fugitive Pattani-based businessman Sahachai Jiansermsin, better known by his nickname Sia Jo. 
Sombat had said earlier that he had heard Sahachai was in the Cambodian border town of Poipet and police were coordinating with the Cambodian Embassy here. They did not divulge any details over what further action the police would take against him.