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Seven officials sued by former Thai national park chief arrested on corruption charges

PHOTO: The Star

The disgraced former director-general of the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation, Rutchada Suriyakul Na Ayutya, has filed a lawsuit against 7 officials at the Criminal Court for Corruption and Misconduct Cases.

According to a Thai PBS World report, the named officials include Jaroonkiat Pankaew, commander of the police’s Counter Corruption Division, Chaiwat Limlikhitaksorn, director of Protected Areas Regional Office 9, and 5 others.

On December 27, Rutchada was arrested at his office while in a meeting with subordinates, including Chaiwat, and 5 million baht in cash was found. Rutchada was recently “temporarily dismissed” following findings supporting the bribe-taking allegations against him.

In his lawsuit, Rutchada accuses the 7 officials of malfeasance in office, deprivation of freedom, false evidence, intrusion into his office, and criminal association. He alleges that they conspired to make him appear to be accepting bribes and recorded the event on video, which was then distributed and damaged his reputation.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

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