Bua Yai police chief Kharom Boonsud said yesterday (Feb 1) the charge could be pressed against Nathaphop Boonthongtho, 51, director of Wat Ban Patong Tha Neon Samakkhee School in Bua Yai district, if there was substantial evidence indicating he committed the offence.
Col Kharom said the charge concerns his relations with the girl, a Mathayom Suksa 2 (eighth grade student) who was embroiled in the love affair scandal with Nathaphob. They intend to question her soon.
Police will discuss with the Provincial Social Development and Human Security Office, whether the inquiry would be conducted at the station or at the Nakhon Ratchasima Shelter for Children and Families where the student is living under the care of officials.
Col Kharom said Nathaphob on Wednesday (Jan 31) acknowledged two previous charges arising from the case of abducting a child aged under 15 for obscene behaviour, and for a related charge of defamation, at Bua Yai Police Station. The defamation suit was lodged against the school director by the mother of the girl’s ex-boyfriend.
Nathaphob accused the ex-boyfriend of selling methamphetamine pills (ya bah). After reporting to investigators, Nathaphob was released as investigators considered he was unlikely to flee. He is scheduled to give a statement to police next month.
The disgraced school director denied all the charges levelled against him on Wednesday and vowed to fight them in court.
He later refused to answer media questions after emerging from the interrogation room.
Meanwhile, Sanong Sudsa-art, director of the Nakhon Ratchasima Primary Education Service Area 6, said yesterday that Nathaphob reported to the office after receiving an order telling him to work there temporarily.
The Nakhon Ratchasima Provincial Education Office would also send orders to transfer him to an inactive post and launch a disciplinary probe against Nathaphob to the office. Nathaphob would be notified of the orders once they arrived at the office. The suspension order would be effective until the probe result comes out, Mr Sanong said.
The sex scandal erupted when angry residents and members of the school committee released copies of Line chat messages on the girl's mobile phone. In the messages, Nathaphop addressed the girl as “darling” and “dear wife”.
The 14-year old girl used the term “thee rak” or darling for him.
Residents also saw him out with the girl on several occasions.
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