March 05, 2013 00:00
By Piyanuch Thamnukasetchai
Three executives of PCC Development and Construction are due to acknowledge fraud charges on Thursday for allegedly failing to pay subcontractors for building work on several hundred police stations.
The executives were named yesterday by Tharit Pengdith, head of the Department of Special Investigation. They are Piboon Udomsithikul, Wisanu Wisetsing and Jaturong Udomsithikul.
The probe into alleged bidding collusion had been completed and the matter would be forwarded to the National Anti-Corruption Commission tomorrow, he said.
Pol Lt Colonel Thawal Mangkhang, a DSI special case officer, said the executives would face 20 counts of fraud based on complaints filed against PCC by 20 subcontractors. A conviction on any count could result in a jail term of up to three years.
The DSI would file another charge of violating the State Procurement Act if police decide next week to cancel PCC’s contract rather than extend the construction period for it to complete the job. If the contract is cancelled, PCC would be accused of entering an abnormally low bid to win the project but then failing to complete the construction.
A DSI source said the probe into bidding collusion had dug up fairly clear evidence that showed political interference especially concerning a Somchai Wongsawat Cabinet resolution for the project to be split into provincial police regions and for separate auctions to be held for each zone.
The source said former deputy premier Suthep Thaugsuban approved bidding by nine regions but then opted to cancel that and approved one centralised tender for all nine regions. That revealed discretionary powers were not based on law, the source alleged.