Friday, July 8, 2016

Banyin affair confirmed, victim's sister not surprised

Johari Seman     10:40:00 PM    

Uracha Vachirakulthol looks on as police take Banyin Tangpakorn, right, into custody on June 28 in Nakhon Ratchasima for the alleged murder of Chuwong Sae Tang. (Crime Suppression Division photo)

A baby born to a woman linked to the theft of millions of baht in shares from Chuwong Sae Tang was fathered not by Chuwong but by the man accused of killing the former construction tycoon, a DNA test has confirmed.

The result comes as no surprise to Chuwong's sister, who said she was confident the test would clear her late brother. But it raises more questions about Banyin Tangpakorn, the retired policeman and former politician charged with the killing.

Wanpen Thanathamsiri, 54, on Friday expressed gratitude to Crime Suppression Division officers for helping to clear up one of the questions that had arisen since Chuwong, 50, died last year.

Mrs Wanpen also said she was watching her back as a suspect in the killing was now out on bail. She did not name Pol Lt Col Banyin but he was recently released on 2-million-baht bail after being charged with premeditated murder.

Uracha Vachirakulthol (centre) and former Nakhon Sawan
 MP Waraporn Tangpakorn (left), Banyin's wife, speak
 to reporters in Bangkok on Tuesday. (Photo by Pornprom Satrabhaya)
Mrs Wanpen, founder of the property development company Wealth Developer Co, met with police to discuss a defamation complaint that Pol Lt Col Banyin filed against her last September. At the time, he said she had accused him of asking Revenue Department officials to examine her company's books.

Pol Lt Col Banyin, 52, served as a deputy commerce minister in the short-lived governments of Samak Sundaravej and Somchai Wongsawat in 2008.

The former minister was arrested on June 28 at a resort in Nakhon Ratchasima with former stockbroker Uracha Vachirakulthol, 27. At the time he denied having a relationship with the woman and said she was just a golfing partner.

His wife Waraporn, 52, joined Ms Uracha in front of a pack of reporters on Tuesday and insisted that the younger woman was only a business partner of her children.

Police collected DNA samples from Ms Uracha's three-month-old baby during their search of her residence in Bangkok on Tuesday and a test reportedly showed the child was related to her and Pol Lt Col Banyin.

Ms Uracha's brother Chaiyaphan Vachirakulthol recently told police that Pol Lt Col Banyin had met her at her home at least four times.
Wanpen Thanathamsiri, elder sister of the late Chuwong Sae Tang,
meets with police at the Pracha Chuen station in Bangkok on Friday.
 (Photo by Patipat Janthong)

Pol Lt Col Banyin, Ms Uracha, her mother and a former model were earlier charged with document forgery, share theft and receipt of stolen property in connection with the suspicious transfers of shares worth 263 million baht from Chuwong.

Police found that shares worth 35 million baht were transferred to Ms Uracha on June 8 last year. Another transfer worth 228 million baht was made two weeks later to former model Kanthana Siwathanapol, also 27.

Earlier the two women claimed to have been Chuwong's mistresses and Ms Kanthana said she had had a child with him.

When Pol Lt Col Banyin was arrested, Ms Uracha was driving a brand-new black Porsche Panamera. Police found that she and her mother had bought it with 6 million baht in cash on July 29, 2015, without having its ownership transferred.

Chuwong was found dead in Pol Lt Col Banyin's Lexus sport utility vehicle after it struck a roadside tree in Prawet district of Bangkok, on June 26 last year. Banyin, who was the driver, insisted they were friends and it was a fatal accident but police suspected he had Chuwong murdered and the accident was then set up to cover the crime.

The accident was similar to one in which Banyin's former wife Rosarin was found dead in their vehicle in Nakhon Sawan province 25 years ago.

The woman's family reportedly suspected the death as she did not know how to drive but local police reported she was the driver. Pol Lt Col Banyin, also a former Nakhon Sawan MP, was then a deputy traffic police inspector.

-Bangkok Post

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