The official order, issued yesterday (Nov 13) by Royal Thai Police Acting Inspector-General Pol Lt Gen Suchart Teerasawat, called for the six officers to report to the Royal Thai Police Operations Centre in Bangkok.
The officers were to present themselves to the Royal Thai Police Operation Center at 10 am today (Nov 14).
The Immigration officers transferred were named as Lt Col Surasak Jaidee, Lt Col Teanchai Chomphu and Sen Sgt Maj Pongphet Jantharat.
The other three officers ordered to report to Bangkok were Capt Adul Boonrat of the Patong Police, Sen Sgt Maj Pornprasit Wenthong of Phuket City Police, and Capt Nimit Sukprasert of Region 8 Police, based at the north end of the island.
The order said the transfers were “to manage neat and productive working”.
The order required that the officers were to remain in Bangkok until further notice.
The transfers come amid a police investigation into alleged shakedowns and possible extortion – or at the very least acceptance of an estimated B100 million in bribes – to not present illegal immigrants arrested to Phuket Immigration for deportation. (See story here.)
So far 15 police officers across Phuket are under investigation for possible connections in relation to the alleged racket. (See story here.)
Meanwhile, former Patong Police Chief Col Chaiwat Uikam and the Patong Police Deputy Chief Lt Col Somsak Thongkleng on Friday (Nov 12) were transferred out of Phuket to the former Region 8 Police Headquarters in Surat Thani province until further notice following allegations of taking bribes from entertainment venues in Patong. (See story here.)
Additional reporting by Eakkapop Thongtub