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Police Chiefs Pol Gen Torsak Sukvimol and Pol Gen Surachate Hakparn Reinstated After Tumultuous Investigation

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National police chief Pol Gen Torsak Sukvimol, left, and his deputy, Pol Gen Surachate Hakparn, share a light-hearted moment after they were ordered by Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin to be transferred to the PM’s Office on March 20, 2024. (Photo: Nutthawat Wichieanbut)

Pol Gen Torsak Sukvimol has been reinstated as national police chief following the completion of an investigation into a much-publicized conflict, according to Wissanu Krea-ngam, an advisor to Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin. Mr. Wissanu on Thursday revealed the investigation results after the prime minister established a fact-finding committee, chaired by Chatchai Promlert, to look into the conflict between Pol Gen Torsak and his deputy Pol Gen Surachate Hakparn.

The four-month-long investigation unveiled extensive conflicts and disorder within the Royal Thai Police across various hierarchies. However, it remains ambiguous whether these issues sprang from a singular cause or multiple sources, said Mr. Wissanu. The findings implicated both Pol Gen Torsak and Pol Gen Surachate, each having team members who contributed to the turmoil, he added.

The investigation honed in on four major cases:

  • A 140-million-baht extortion case involving a gambling suspect known as ‘Pae’ and a police commander.
  • The shooting of a highway police officer in Nakhon Pathom, which involved influential figure Praween Chankhlai, also known as Kamnan Nok.
  • The Minnie online gambling network, allegedly operated by single mother Suchanun Suchaitchinsri, alias Minnie.
  • The BNK Master gambling network.

Additionally, 10 other cases were filed with police stations and the Criminal Court for Corruption and Misconduct Cases Region 7.

Some of these conflicts have sparked recently, while others trace back a decade, Mr. Wissanu noted. All cases have been forwarded to relevant agencies, including the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC), the Department of Special Investigation (DSI), prosecutors, and courts.

Mr. Wissanu stated that Pol Gen Surachate had been reinstated as deputy national police chief on April 18 following his transfer to the Prime Minister’s Office on March 20. A disciplinary committee was established to investigate Pol Gen Surachate, and there was an order to temporarily suspend him from the police force.

Since there were no further issues to investigate Pol Gen Torsak, it was agreed to reinstate him as well. On March 20, Mr. Srettha unexpectedly transferred both senior police officials to the Prime Minister’s Office in an effort to quell the burgeoning rift within the police force.

Deputy national police chief Kitrat Panphet was subsequently appointed as the acting police chief.

There have been reports suggesting that Pol Gen Surachate may face charges of money laundering in connection with the online gambling networks.


  1. Mike N June 20, 2024

    This reinstatement is a classic case of sweeping things under the rug. How can we trust the police when their top brass is caught in scandals?

    • Anna K June 20, 2024

      Agreed, Mike. It’s hard to believe that everything is resolved just because they were reinstalled. The corruption runs deeper than that.

      • Tommy June 20, 2024

        But they had an investigation, right? Maybe we’re being too harsh. Mistakes happen. They’ve been cleared.

      • Anna K June 20, 2024

        Tommy, just because an investigation happened doesn’t mean it’s thorough or unbiased. Especially when politics are involved.

    • Singh June 20, 2024

      Trust needs to be earned, not given because of positions. I hope there is transparency moving forward.

  2. Sara B June 20, 2024

    I’m shocked that they are back in power so quickly. What about accountability?

    • Priscilla June 20, 2024

      The rich and powerful seldom face real consequences. It’s the same everywhere, sadly.

    • Sara B June 20, 2024

      Too true, Priscilla. It’s just disheartening to see it happening openly.

  3. Peter H. June 20, 2024

    Does anyone else think that moving them to the PM’s Office was just a way to keep them in power while this ‘investigation’ happened?

  4. Lance Armstrong June 20, 2024

    This is why the civilians don’t trust the authorities. Too much power and not enough oversight.

    • Kayla June 20, 2024

      Absolutely, Lance. We need more checks and balances.

  5. Ying June 20, 2024

    I think it’s good they are back if they were found not guilty. Innocent until proven guilty, right?

  6. Pradeep June 20, 2024

    This whole situation is a joke. They were probably never worried about this investigation to begin with.

    • Sunil June 20, 2024

      You may be right, Pradeep. The powerful always manage to evade real scrutiny.

    • Pradeep June 20, 2024

      Exactly, Sunil. And we are left to wonder if justice will ever be served.

  7. Nina P June 20, 2024

    While this situation is disheartening, it’s not just about these two individuals. The whole system needs reform.

    • Sam June 20, 2024

      Spot on, Nina. Structural changes are necessary for real improvement.

  8. Artemis June 20, 2024

    What’s laughable is that these investigations often appear just for show. Who’s really policing the police?

  9. Bo June 20, 2024

    Moving these officials around like chess pieces only deepens public distrust.

    • Hannah G June 20, 2024

      And how do we know the investigation wasn’t biased?

    • Bo June 20, 2024

      Good point, Hannah. Transparency is crucial, but it seems lacking here.

  10. JustDave June 20, 2024

    Isn’t it odd how these high-profile cases usually end with little to no consequences?

  11. Ellie June 20, 2024

    The fact four major cases were highlighted in the investigation shows there’s more to this than meets the eye.

  12. James L June 20, 2024

    Policing is a tough job, but these reinstatements don’t inspire confidence.

  13. Kara B June 20, 2024

    Moving them to the PM’s Office was just a way to let things cool down. Nothing surprising.

  14. Mohammed I June 20, 2024

    This whole affair reflects poorly on the authorities. We need real accountability, not just transfers.

  15. Leo June 20, 2024

    If investigations like these only serve to reinstate the same corrupt officials, what’s the point?

  16. Aileen June 20, 2024

    It’s alarming that money laundering charges are still hanging over Surachate’s head.

  17. Sophia W June 20, 2024

    It’s easy to point fingers, but the responsibility lies with everyone in the system, not just the top.

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