Ex-deputy 3rd Army region chief turns himself in

Wednesday, 09 July 2014 By  MCOT

BANGKOK, July 8 -- Ex-deputy 3rd Army region chief Lt Gen Manas Paorik, wanted by the Sara Buri Military Court for possession of war weapons and involvement with the so-called Black Clad group, which clashed with police and military in a political protest in 2010, surrendered to the Crime Suppression Department (CSD) today.

The ex-senior military officer said he had only recently learned, on June 29, that he was wanted by the government for alleged possession of war weapons and involvement with the Black Clad armed group.

He said he decided to turn himself in to show his innocence, as well as to deny any involvements with the Black Clad or any other group which had clashed with the police four years ago.

He further denied that he was close to Jakrapob Penkair, former Minister attached to the Prime Minister's Office during the tenure of former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, who fled the country for political self-exile.

However, he admitted he has spoken to the former politician a couple of times when he was still in position.

The former senior military officer denied any close acquaintance with the late Maj Gen Khattiya Sawasdipol, known as Seh Daeng, who was shot dead during the protest in 2010.

He later presented evidence to the police, along with a doctor's certificate informing the authorities of his many illnesses to present them as documentations to ask for bail.

Gen Mana was among the 13 wanted suspects and was the first to contact the authorities asking to turn himself in.

Three wanted suspects wanted were arrested prior to this recent surrender, while authorities believes nine other suspects would later contact the police to turn themselves in.

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