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POMC orders DSI chief to stop issuing warrants for PDRC leaders

NATIONAL POLICE chief Adul Saengsingkaew yesterday denied that Army chief Prayuth Chan-ocha has ordered Department of Special Investigation (DSI) chief Tarit Pengdith to revoke arrest warrants for People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) leaders wanted on sedition charges.

Adul said Prayuth, who is director of the Peace and Order Maintaining Command (POMC), only instructed Tarit to suspend issuing new arrest warrants for other PDRC leaders. Police would continue prosecution of those for whom warrants were already in play.

"Arrest warrants on sedition charges have a 20-year statute of limitations. Police will also proceed with prosecution of other criminal cases that took place during the rallies," Adul said.

The police chief denied reports that the military and police were at loggerheads over the current political situation, insisting both had "good, mutual understanding".

He said that during the imposition of martial law, soldiers would solely be in charge of overseeing political rallies. Police have withdrawn their personnel at all security checkpoints.

He denied the military took over because police were incompetent, noting that political conflict was a delicate matter that had continued for years.

Tarit said Immigration Police arrested PDRC leader Seri Wongmonta at Suvarnabhumi Airport after he returned from the United States. He said Seri was wanted on sedition charges and police would have faced accusations of dereliction of duty if they had not arrested him. He said Seri would be sent to the Criminal Court.

Tarit said the DSI would follow the policy issued by the POMC not to arrest other PDRC leaders. He would submit arrest warrants for more than 20 PDRC leaders who have not yet been arrested to Prayuth for consideration.

Tarit said he would also suspend the summons for acting Senate Speaker Surachai Liengboon-lertchai over allegations that he backed PDRC chief Suthep Thaugsuban over his alleged sedition activities.


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