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FRIDAY, September 30, 2022
Another hi-so case, another test for Thai justice

Another hi-so case, another test for Thai justice

WEDNESDAY, July 25, 2018
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Wan Chalerm, son of politician Chalerm Yubamroong, has turned himself in and been charged with injuring Panuwat Punnarattanakul on Bangkok’s Soi Thong Lor, Bangkok.

Allegedly, Wan and four friends kicked and punched Panuwat, who had quarrelled with Wan’s son in Singapore, and one of Wan’s friends warned Panuwat’s friend off with a gun, firing shots in the air. Chalerm is a leading light of the Pheu Thai party.
Flashback to 2001: Wan’s elder brother, then named Duangchalerm, was accused of shooting dead a decorated, on-duty police officer in a Thong Lor bar. He fled to Malaysia, only surrendering to police after 182 days, during which time the CCTV video of the incident was “lost” and witnesses’ memories became foggy. The case ended in an acquittal due to insufficient evidence and conflicting witness accounts.
PM Prayut, you grabbed power allegedly to cleanse us of corruption and enforce one standard for all. Yet, for example, Red Bull heir Vorayuth, wanted for the hit-and-run killing of a cop in Bangkok, remains at large after many years, and the investigation into the true owner of Deputy PM Prawit’s 25 ultra-expensive watches is going nowhere. This is an opportunity to show that you put country above vested interests, and deserve to lead us after elections. 
Will we see justice done, or old-style cronyism and double standards? PM Prayut, the choice is yours.
Burin Kantabutra