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Top Lawyers Commence Court Battle Over Police Torture Video



hospital, Police Panel Confirms Suspect Died of Suffocation Not Overdose

Two top lawyers in Thailand have commenced a court battle over accusations with regards to the video clip of the former police chief posted on Facebook Thailand earlier this week.

Celebrity lawyer Mr Decha Kittiwittayanan on Friday filed a defamation complaint against another famed lawyer, Sittha Biabangkerd, for claims made about the publication of the torture video clip of a drug suspect.

Attorney Decha lodged the complaint against Mr Sittha, who posted the clip to expose police brutality on Tuesday, with police at a Nakhon Sawan station. According to the complaint, Mr Sittha accused Mr Decha of using the clip to extort 20 million baht from Pol Col Thitisan Utthanaphon in exchange for not publishing the torture footage.

Mr Decha said he also received the clip, from a senior police officer, 15 minutes before Mr Sittha did, but decided to hold on to it because the case was being investigated, and releasing it could compromise the probe.

Lawer Decha denied blackmailing Pol Col Thitisan and challenged Mr Sittha to prove the allegation. Mr Sittha shrugged off the complaint and suggested Mr Decha file a defamation suit directly with a court. He also said his decision to make the clip public led to the arrest of Pol Col Thitisan and others involved.

Lawyer Mr Sittha posted the clip on his Facebook page on Tuesday.

According to Mr Sittha, he obtained the clip from a junior police officer who feared for his safety and sought his help in forwarding the clip to the national police chief.

Former police chief denied bail

Meanwhile, a criminal court on Friday denied bail for the former police station chief accused of torturing a drug suspect to death in a case that has shocked Thailand. The criminal court agreed on a request made by Nakhon Sawan police to keep former Pol Col Thitisan Utthanaphon in custody for 12 more days.

He was denied bail so that police investigators could interview 10 witnesses.

Police told the court that Pol Col Thitisan needed to be held as he could possibly face multiple charges including torture and murder. According to Thai legal experts, a suspect can be detained for up to seven 12-day periods, or 84 days, before an indictment must be handed down.

Because of the high-profile nature of the case, national police chief Suwat Jangyodsuk has ordered the central Crime Suppression Division (CDS) from Bangkok take over the investigation from Nakhon Sawan police.

Former Pol Col Thitisan Utthanaphon , known as “Jo Ferrari” for his collection of expensive sports cars, has denied any wrongdoing, he has denied everything.