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10 dealers could face questioning over car-tax dodge

BANGKOK: More than 10 luxury car dealers believed to be linked to a tax avoidance scheme and a network that shipped stolen vehicles from Britain to Thailand could be summoned for questioning, the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) said.

crime, transport, police,

Bangkok Post

Monday 29 May 2017, 09:11AM

A DSI officer checking the status of a Lamborghini and other luxury cars likes what he sees at a high-class showroom. Photo: Post Today
A DSI officer checking the status of a Lamborghini and other luxury cars likes what he sees at a high-class showroom. Photo: Post Today

The move followed the seizure of a total of 160 luxury cars worth B3 billion during raids on May 18 and 24, with the vehicles suspected of being falsely declared to avoid Thailand’s high import duties.

The DSI also found that 10 of 42 mostly luxury cars which the British National Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service (NaVCIS) said were stolen in Britain were shipped to Thailand.

DSI deputy chief Korrawat Panprapakorn said yesterday (May 28) that his agency is set to issue summons against those believed to be involved with buying and selling the stolen vehicles.

More than 10 sellers are likely to be involved, the identities of which will be known this week after DSI officials meet to discuss the investigation, he said.

The buyers will be summoned for questioning after the sellers have been dealt with, Lt Col Korrawat said.

The DSI is in the process of examining documents that were used in the importing of the cars.

Information will be exchanged with the Customs Department to determine which buyers intended to commit the offence, he said.

Citing the NaVCIS on the network that smuggled the cars from Britain into Thailand, Lt Col Korrawat said it is thought the criminals made car hire purchase deals using loans taken out from UK financial institutions and then sold the vehicles to Thai accomplices.

The stolen vehicles, he said, were then shipped to Thailand, as insurance claims were being lodged by the owners of the stolen vehicles.

Lt Col Korrawat said the operation was similar to that in which cars were stolen in Malaysia and smuggled to Thailand.

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It could also be linked to a similar network in Laos, he said.

Referring to the 10 stolen vehicles found in Thailand, the DSI deputy chief said six of them were parked in showrooms, three sold to others and another waiting to pass through the Customs Department.

Actor-cum-singer Pakorn Lam, or Dome, has been thrust in the spotlight after his green Lamborghini Huracan was reportedly seized by the DSI, which carried out the raid at a showroom of STT Autocar Co early this month.

Reports have emerged that Pakorn asked the shop to sell his Lamborghini and promised to buy a car from the company once his vehicle was sold.

Also yesterday, DSI chief Paisit Wongmuang said he was uncertain about this information and the DSI officials will check the chassis and vehicle identification numbers to determine whether this was the same car belonging to Pakorn.

Meanwhile, the singer posted on his Instagram on Saturday night (May 27) that he had bought his green Lamborghini legally from the single authorised dealer in Thailand and he has legitimate documents to verify the purchase.

“I felt shocked after seeing the news about my Lamborghini. The news is harsh and could create misunderstanding among readers,” Pakorn’s Instagram posting reads. He said he is ready to clarify the issue as soon as possible.

Lt Col Korrawat said he has yet to check the details of Pakorn’s Instagram posting, but insisted officers have evidence determining where the singer bought his vehicle from.

Read original story here.



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