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Former Police Chief’s “Joe Ferrari” Now Denies all Charges

Who Ya Gonna Believe Me or Your Own Eyes

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lawyers, Former Police Chief's "Joe Ferrari" Now Denies all Charges

The former police chief labelled “Joe Ferrari” accused of manslaughter has now denied all charges made against him over a high-profile case, according to his lawyer. The former police chief is alleged to have fatally torture of a drug suspect at Nakhon Sawan’s Muang police station.

Lawyer Chokechai Angkaew said Pol Col Thitisan Utthanaphon denied all the charges during police questioning and vowed to fight the case in court. Amazingly his denial stands in stark contrast to the remarks he made when he phoned in and spoke to reporters during a press conference on Thursday night.

The former police station chief, also known as “Joe Ferrari”, surrendered to police at the Crime Suppression Division in Bangkok earlier on Thursday evening.

During the press conference, Pol Col Thitisan admitted ordering the partial suffocation of Mr Chiraphong Thanapat — a 24-year-old drug suspect — with plastic bags during interrogation. However he said the motive was not to extort money from him.

“It is the right of the suspect [to deny the charges],” Mr Chokechai said while refusing to reveal what charges were brought against former Pol Col Thitisan.

Lawyers say senior police broke the law

The Lawyers Association of Thailand (LAT) on Saturday criticized senior officers for allowing Pol Col Thitisan to speak to reporters during the press conference at the CSD on Thursday night.

“This is tantamount to giving the suspect more rights than the law allows. This is against the law,” the LAT said.

Previously, senior police were also accused of using the press conference to shield Pol Col Thitisan, triggering public suspicion, particularly on social media, that he might eventually be spared punishment.

The LAT also said Pol Col Thitisan’s remarks during the press conference could be seen as excuses or as him asking for sympathy.

“The remarks could influence public feeling or investigators, while damaged parties and witnesses may also be pressured, which could affect the justice process,” the Lawyers said.

The Lawyers association also said that investigators must find out who drove Pol Col Thitisan to meet Pol Maj Gen Ekarak Limsangkat, deputy commissioner of the Provincial Police Region 6, in Chon Buri last Wednesday.

“The driver is a key witness in the case and investigators must find out the details,” the Lawyers said.

Pol Maj Gen Ekarak told the press conference that he could not remember the licence plate number of the white car which Pol Col Thitisan arrived and left in.

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